A woman whose classic car was stolen from a garage in Leighton Buzzard is pleading for the public’s help to trace it.
The stolen 1971 (K Reg) bright red Mini 1000 was the first car Louise Palmer-Thompson owned 30 years ago when she passed her driving test at 17.
Over time, she has restored the car – nicknamed ‘Plod’ – to its former glory and displayed it at classic car shows.
However last Tuesday (May 7), she was devastated to learn the mini had been stolen from its garage in Mile Tree Court on Clarence Road.
Now, she is offering a cash reward for information on its wherabouts.
Louise said: “The car is priceless to me and I am so sad. It has many memories and history going to the Mini shows and London to Brighton Mini runs over the years, collecting parts and making modifications.
“We’ve had the car in the garage for about 15 years but we hadn’t driven it much for a while.
“My mum went into the garage last Tuesday and noticed it was empty, with pieces of a smashed window on the floor and we realised the car had been stolen.”
According to the family, there have been a number of break-ins to nearby garages, with tools and bike parts stolen. Louise told the LBO that because the car was rarely used, it was not widely known to be the garage and that it was bad luck that thieves came across it.
She said: “They locked the garage door afterwards, which is very strange.
“We’re doing our own campaign to find it.
“Any other car you could replace, but even if we got another mini 1000 it wouldn’t be the same. All of my family love that car.”
The car has deadlocks and a big steering lock. Its modification include a half roll cage, grey Mayfair seats, complete chrome work inside and out, a walnut dash and steering wheel, spectrum engineering split rim alloys and stainless steel sports exhaust system.
At the time it was stolen, the car battery was flat and Louise believes it was probably towed away using a trailer or truck.
She added: “We are hoping someone may have seen it being towed away. A bright red old mini is hard to miss!
“Neighbours in the houses around the garages and some shops in Clarence Road have been so kind and helpful.”
Louise has also taken to social media to spread the news far and wide. She added: “I am overwhelmed at how quick it’s been circulated and the kind comments from everyone.
“There are already over 2,000 shares on Facebook from people in the UK and abroad. The mini community is very small really. We all love our minis, they aren’t just cars, they are our family!”
Anyone with information on the mini’s wherabouts is asked to contact Louise on 07973 282601.