Police want to speak to a man after a Union Jack was pocketed from a city centre pub but the culprit unwittingly uncovered a CCTV camera which captured them in the act.
Landlord Mike Mercer, whose Albion Inn is festooned with First World War memorabilia, was upset when the large flag disappeared because it had sentimental value as it dated from his time in the merchant navy.
Police say the Union Flag was stolen from the pub porch about 6.30pm on Wednesday October 15.
Sergeant Andy Burrage, of Cheshire Police, said: “We are keen to speak to the male in the CCTV image following the theft of the flag from the Albion pub. If anyone knows who he might be then I would encourage them to contact police on 101, quoting reference 0714308396.”
Landlord Mike Mercer, a member of the Royal Society of St George, believes the man who took the flag is in his 40s. He said: “You would think people of that age would have a bit more respect for patriotism and things like that.”
Meanwhile, well-wishers have got in touch with him after reading a Chronicle article about the missing flag including one who donated a series of flags.
Mike explained: “An old ship mate got in touch and the amount of people who read that article and people who have said ‘Have you got your flag back?’ and then a guy phoned me up.
“I explained that it was not so much the monetary value, it was the fact it was a Union Jack. The next thing the guy’s round here with a whole armful of flags and I don’t mean tiny things, I mean big things, a Union Jack, a Clan Line flag and funnily enough the old South African flag.
“We always hang these flags in the pub when we hold our Christmas in the Trenches event so these flags are going to be handy for us.”