‘Priceless’ Whitrope Heritage Centre railway signs stolen

Waverley Route Heritage Association stolen signs
Waverley Route Heritage Association stolen signs

Thieves targeted the Whitrope Heritage Centre last week and stole several antique railway signs from the station platform.

The enamel signs were taken from the charitable organisation’s site between the evening of last Thursday and last Saturday.

Secretary for the Waverley Route Heritage Association (WRHA) Matthew Stoddon told the Hawick News this week: “The monetary value isn’t much, but some of the signs were original Waverley route signs, so in that context for the heritage association we consider them to be priceless.”

Donated to the association in 2002, the Mazawattee Tea, Bluebell Tobacco and Dunlop Tyres signs were originally used at Riccarton Junction until 1969.

Although the signs are only estimated to be worth between £40 to £100, it’s still a huge blow for the association.

Mr Stoddon said: “You can pick up versions of these for just a few pounds, but the originals can’t be replaced.

“It’s possible that someone stole them to sell, or just took a fancy to them as they collected enamel signs. Maybe they didn’t realise the significance they have for the Waverley group.

“We’ve contacted people at various railway auctions to see if they’ve found them. Numerous places sell these sort of items. We’ve also been looking at classified ads and gumtree.”

Mr Stoddon suspects it was an organised robbery. He said: “You’d have to know they were there, as there’s only one road in and out of Whitrope.

“It’s possible they went to steal them when it was quiet.

“We’ve never had problems before, but we’re stepping up security on site now.”

If anyone has any information regarding the missing signs please notify Hawick Police Station on 375051 or contact the Waverley Route Heritage Association on info@wrha.org.uk