Hunt for man who stole a £40,000 custom-made bassoon accidentally left on a train by a musician

  • A search is on for a £40,000 bassoon accidentally left on a train on October 19
  • It was stored in an overhead container that went from Lewes, England to Brighton. 
  • Another man saw the windpipe in the traditional style and took it from him after he had left the train.
  • CCTV has been provided by police to assist in their investigations.

Police are attempting to track down a thief who stole a £40,000 bassoon accidentally left behind on a train by a professional musician.

Stuart Russell had the rare instrument mistakenly left his carriage, so a passenger lifted it.

Police say this man could have information relevant to their investigation

According to police, this man may have relevant information for their investigations

British Transport Police released photos of an individual they are looking for to speak with about the theft of the woodwind instrument on the Lewes-to Brighton East Sussex service on October 19.

Russell had put the classic instrument in his overhead baggage compartment, but Russell forgot to grab it as he was about to leave Brighton at 2pm.  

He realised his error and ran back to the platform, but the train was already back at Lewes. Police said.

Unbeknownst to the passenger who saw it was gone, another passenger lifted the bassoon, and he took off for Southwick, West Sussex.

Russell shared this Instagram post: “The Bassoon is an uncommon instrument. This is the custom-made gentleman’s model bassoon that Ben Bell (Canada), made in 2013. 

«[It has]Serial Number 116. Joints stamped with’made in Canada’. 

“It was found in a Bonna black model backpack bag for gents that had Vonk leg rest attachment, 2 Crooks, 2 Reed cases and additional bassoon accessories.

“This instrument is very special to me. Please contact me if you know whereabouts.

Owner Stuart Russell has shared images of the highly prized classical instrument on Instagram in an effort to track it down

Stuart Russell, owner of the classically-prized instrument, shared photos on Instagram with an attempt to find it

Police want to interview this man, who they believe could hold vital clues to their investigation

This man is wanted by police because they think he could have vital information that will aid their investigations.

British Transport Police have released images of CCTV taken on the train as part their investigation.

The officers believe that the suspect in the photos may have valuable information which could aid with their investigation.

A spokesman for British Transport Police said: ‘Officers investigating the theft of a bassoon, worth up to £40,000, on a service from Lewes to Brighton are releasing CCTV images in connection.

“On Tuesday, October 19, an individual boarded the 2.04pm train from Lewes to Brighton. He placed his bassoon inside the overhead baggage hold.

He alighted from the train and left his instrument at home. When he reached the platform, the train was gone.

Further investigations revealed that the instrument had been stolen by another passenger, who boarded a train towards Hastings before boarding a Southwick service.

“Officers think the man seen in the CCTV photos may have valuable information that could aid their investigations.”

British Transport Police can be reached by texting at 61016, calling 0800 40540, and quoting reference number 2100079515 to anyone who has any information. Or, anonymously call Crimestoppers at 0800 55 111.