This week in history: Pigeon fancier finds seven of his stolen birds in Shoreditch shop window

The Gazette 60 years ago

The Gazette 60 years ago - Credit: Archant

A pigeon fancier claimed he found seven of his stolen birds on sale in a livestock shop, this week 60 years ago.

Thomas Newman said when he went to the loft at the bottom of his garden on Saturday night he realised 15 of his racing pigeons were missing.

The next day he found a few of them - worth £21 - in Thomas Fowles’ shop in Shoreditch. But Fowles, 62, pleaded not guilty to receiving stolen goods and was acquitted.

Newman described how one of his missing birds has returned by 9am Sunday. Two hours later he went to the shop and saw seven more of them in the window.

When he said they were his pigeons, Fowles apparently did not deny it, but started “humming and hawing”.

Newman was asked by the magistrate’s clerk: “How could you recognise them as your pigeons?”

He answered: “I think most fanciers can. I can by the markings.”