A £5,000 reward is being offered for the safe return of two life-sized figures of comics Laurel and Hardy.
Dean Floyd, 54, is offering the cash incentive after the 6ft statues were stolen last Thursday from outside the home of Lesley Haylett and her partner Peter Elliott, in Romford, east London.
Mr Floyd knows the couple through their charitable work in the area. He decided to offer the incentive as he felt sorry for the couple.
He told the PA news agency: “I just think that it is a shame that this happened to someone like Lesley, who gives her heart and soul to everything she does. I think it would be nice to get them back. She’s what I’d call a Havering star. So if we can help, we definitely will.”
Mr Floyd said the reward was being offered on behalf of his construction company, Chigwell Group, rather than from his own pocket.
“I drive past them four or five times a week and it’s sad to see they’ve gone,” he added. “I think that if the amount was just £500 or £1,000, I don’t think it is enough to impact someone to say something.”
The Stan Laurel statue which along with her Oliver Hardy figure have been stolen for a fourth time outside of their home in Romford, East London. (Lesley Haylett/PA)
The statues have been stolen many times over the years. In 2018 they were returned after being taken three years earlier.
Ms Haylett previously told the PA news agency she and Mr Elliott were “devastated” the statues were taken again. She said Laurel and Hardy featured prominently in a Christmas display she and Peter stage every year which raises thousands of pounds for charity.
Anyone with any information should call the police on 101.