92-year-old has bike stolen outside Porty library

David Turner usually cycles 20 miles a day.  Picture: Lisa Ferguson

David Turner usually cycles 20 miles a day. Picture: Lisa Ferguson

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A 92-YEAR-OLD community activist had his bike stolen as he popped into the library for a few minutes.

Well-known Portobello man David Turner was shocked to discover his beloved bike – which he has owned for almost 20 years – had been taken when he went to retrieve it.

David Truner had had his bike for 20 years. Picture: contributed

David Truner had had his bike for 20 years. Picture: contributed

Mr Turner cycles almost daily – making trips to Musselburgh and Fort Kinnaird – and says the mode of transport helps his arthritic knee.

Now the Portobello community has launched an appeal for residents to look out for his distinctive red bike in a bid to reunite it with the pensioner.

Some have also offered to donate money to buy him a new one.

Mr Turner, who is chair of the local Amnesty International group, said: “As usual, I took the bike to the library and left it at the bike railings.

“I didn’t padlock it like I mostly do as I was only popping in for a few minutes, and it always feels safe there.

“But when I came out, there was no bike there.”

The theft occurred at around 2.30pm on Tuesday, and Mr Turner reported it to the police straight away.

The bike has green panniers, one which says “scrap Trident” and the other which reads “Scotland in Europe yes”. The bike model is ‘Edinburgh’.

Mr Turner said: “I enjoy cycling and have always cycled. I’m fairly well known in the area for cycling around everywhere, and I’m lucky to be able to do so at my age. I would never consider it a bike worth stealing.

“I’m very philosophical about things. Property is of little worth at my age, but I’d hate not to have a bike. It’s unpleasant to think that someone was watching me as I left my bike to go into the library.

“I can only imagine it was done on impulse and it may be that whoever took it just dumps it. I’d like to get it back.”

Mr Turner, who regularly fundraises in the local area and attends community meetings, has borrowed a bike from a friend in the meantime.

Portobello residents have shown their support via a Facebook group.

One said: “That’s awful news. I suggest a whip round to get David another bike. I’ll put £25 in the pot.”

Another wrote: “David is a lovely man who would do anything for anyone.”

A Police spokesman said: “Police are investigating after the theft of a bike from Rosefield Avenue near Portobello Library.

“The incident happened some time between 2.40pm and 3.05pm on Tuesday.

“The bike is described as around 15 to 20 years old, red in colour and has distinct green panniers.

“Inquiries into this matter are ongoing and anyone who has seen the bike or who noticed any suspicious behaviour is asked to contact police on 101.”