Lost and Found on the Underground - Surprising Lost Items

Wednesday, 18 September 2013

Whilst many people seem almost surgically attached to their mobile phones these days, these essential gadgets are surprisingly easy to lose. In fact, every year more than 25,000 mobile phones are lost on London’s transport network and turn up in the Lost Property Office (LPO).

Laptops, bags, wallets and purses are all typical items that often get left behind in a taxi or on the Underground, but there have also been some weirder items that you might not believe could be mislaid, including:

• Samurai swords
• A grandfather clock
• A stuffed fox
• False teeth (in fact there are boxes of false teeth in the LPO, waiting to be claimed)
• Single shoes
• A collection of human skulls (this was eventually claimed by a forgetful university lecturer)
• A wedding dress
• An urn full of ashes

Perhaps the most interesting thing left behind was a briefcase stuffed with £10,000 in cash. Despite initial concerns about the legitimacy of the cash, staff were relieved when the money was claimed by an elderly gentleman who simply had a mistrust of banks.

Staff at the LPO were in for a shock one day when they flicked through the images on one of the many digital cameras in their collection. Looking for a clue as to who the rightful owner was, a member of staff saw several summer holiday snaps before stumbling across a photo which clearly indicated that the holidaying couple in the pics were actually honeymooners!

Expensive items at the LPO that remain unclaimed are auctioned off (the contents are deleted first!) to raise funds for the operation, which handles over 1,000 lost items every day.

However, not everyone is lucky enough to have their property turn up at the LPO, returned by honest passengers or diligent staff - and a number of valuable items are lost or stolen never to be returned.

While it's impossible to completely eliminate the risk of losing your valuables while out and about, you can at least protect them by adding Swiftcover Personal Possessions cover to your contents insurance, which provides up to £15,000 worth of cover for your belongings outside of the home and anywhere in the world.

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