Theft halts Parson Drove man’s charity effort

Gareth Bussey
Gareth Bussey

Callous thieves have put the brakes on a charity rider’s fundraising efforts after his bike was among a £2,300 haul stolen from his home.

Gareth Bussey has raised more than £1,500 for leukaemia and children’s cancer charities through cycling since buying his bike just three months ago, and was hoping to raise even more next year.

But the 41-year-old will have to miss out on planned sponsored events after determined thieves stole his pride and joy from his home in Main Road, Parson Drove.

The red and white Specialized road bike, worth £1,200, was taken along with bikes belonging to his wife Beverley and 14-year-old daughter Cerys and various tools between 9pm on Wednesday and 1.30pm on Thursday.

The thieves got into a farmer’s field at the back of the Bussey’s property and broke a fence panel to gain entry into their garden.

They then broke a lock on a garden shed and stole Beverley and Cerys’ bikes and tools including a trolley jack, before breaking into a second shed to take Gareth’s.

He said: “My bike was covered over and chained to a Calor gas cannister. They couldn’t remove the chain so they took the cannister as well.

“There must have been at least two thieves to have been able to carry it.”

Gareth believes his family were targeted specifically, believing the thieves may have seen the bikes on the back of their car when they returned from a recent holiday.

The culprits didn’t take son Ashley’s bike, possibly because Gareth said it was covered in mud.

But the nine-year-old youngster is now worried they will come back for it.

Gareth, who works as a printer for Coveris – formerly Paragon Print and Packaging – in Wisbech, only bought his bike three months ago as a way of raising money for charity.

He has been on the Anthony Nolan bone marrow register for around 20 years, and the charity sent him a letter asking if he could help with raising funds.

“I used to bike a lot and I thought getting a bike would be a great way to improve my fitness but also to raise money,” he said.

Since his purchase, he completed the Ride London-Surrey 100, a 100-mile challenge in the pouring rain last month and raised £1,300 for the Anthony Nolan charity.

He also took part in a 460-mile cycle ride organised by Coveris in memory of former colleague Steve Callaway, who lost his battle with cancer in November.

Gareth cycled a 127-mile leg from Peterborough and raised more than £200 – with the event so far raising more than £7,000 in aid of children’s cancer charity CLIC Sargent.

He said: “I was planning to take part in next year’s London 100 as well as the Norwich 100, but without the bike I can’t take part in any future fundraising events.”

• Witnesses and anyone with information on the theft or whereabouts of the bikes can contact police on 101 or Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555111.