An Alford collector has been left mystified by the motives of thieves who have stole three garden gnomes and a concrete rabbit from outside his home.
The petty thefts during the past two to three weeks have upset owner Ron Bloomfield Aka Ron the Gnome, infamous for his collection and also the community of Alford who have been left puzzled by their disappearance.
“At first one disappeared and then turned up on the doorstep of the police station,” said Ron.
Ron has since been forced to cement his beloved garden friends to the ground to deter thieves from taking them.
“I’ve cemented them down to stop them but two haven’t been returned,” add Ron.
The enthusiast who is a retired window cleaner has turned his home ‘Gnome Cottage’ into a shrine for the models collecting 1,700 to date.
“People give me them and leave them in carrier bags, I’ve even got other characters such as Smurfs and Wallace & Gromit in the another room,” he explained.
Ron who is a keen charity man has been collecting them for more than 50 years, acquiring so many now that they fill his whole home and even adorn his clothes as pin badges.
He also dresses-up as his favourite gnomes regularly to help raise money for the NSPCC.
“I help raise money for lots of local charities, particularly the NSPCC but also Help for Heroes and Lincolnshire Troop Support which helps wounded soldiers in a Birmingham hospital,” added Ron.
Ron also gets a lot of visitors and interest from around the nation for his passion and charity work.
“I have a lot of visitors coming to look at my cottage and collection too,” said Ron.
Local Rainbow groups also attend annually to admire the happy, smiling faces at Ron’s home.
Ron would like the missing two gnomes back and says although they aren’t really valuable its for sentimental.
A spokesperson for Lincolnshire Police said: “Although the gnomes may have been taken as a prank, we would remind people that taking property without permission is theft and those responsible could find the consequences aren’t so funny. We would ask the culprits to return the gnomes as quickly as possible and give some consideration to the distress they have caused the householder.”