Of all the things to leave on the forecourt of a petrol station, an eight inch strap-on probably isn’t the most ideal.
However, this was the decidedly raunchy sight which greeted a gobsmacked cleaner at a petrol station in Holmes Chapel, Cheshire, on the bright, sunny morning of April 6.
‘Luckily’ the proud owner could be easily found, all thanks to the box containing the ‘battered’ and ‘much-loved’ sex toy bearing a name and address. It belonged to a fun-loving woman based in Manchester, who would no doubt be missing the cheeky item from her toy box.
And so the thoroughly tickled petrol station workers decided to post the toy back to the ‘lusty litterbug’, all wrapped up in clear packaging. I mean, fair play…
Petrol station manager Duncan Edwards couldn’t believe it when the cleaner showed him this naughty piece of lost property and – after the initial shock had passed – the pair were able to share a good chuckle.
Wisely pulling on some protective gloves, Duncan, of Stockport, Greater Manchester, took the sizeable toy into his office where he noticed the address label.
Duncan decided to make it his mission to reunite the toy with its owner, hoping it would make her think again before leaving her personal and erm, well-worn items around willy-nilly.
The 47-year-old dad-of-two quipped:
It was like a real-life Toy Story, albeit with a different kind of Woody. It was a whopper and obviously a much-loved member of someone’s family.
It was pretty well battered and the elastic was frayed, it looked like it had been stretched no end and there were marks on the actual equipment, it wasn’t nice.
Part of my thinking was if I send it back like that they might think twice about discarding used equipment – there could have been children about.
It was found near the vacuums at 9am on Saturday morning so possibly left overnight. We don’t know if they’ve been cleaning their car out and left it out or attempted to dispose it.
The cleaner picked it up and he gave the box a shake once he saw what was in it he said to me ‘you’ve got to come and see this’. Obviously no-one is going to own up to it but I just couldn’t believe that whoever had disposed of it had left their name and address on the box.
We were absolutely howling and the rest of the staff were too when they found out. We’ve had some bizarre things handed in before such as crutches but never any strap-ons, it was a first for me.
When he took it through to the office we could see the address on it and decided to have a bit of light-hearted fun. We have some shrink wrap for stock so decided to use that and post it back to them – it was fair game and they can have it back as far as I’m concerned.
Duncan posted the sex toy in a letter box near his home; complete with a label warning ‘strap on, handle with care!’, no doubt giving the unsuspecting postman the surprise of his life.
Concerned about the twitching curtains of his neighbours, Duncan wanted to post the large package in the post box as quickly as possible. However, due to the heft of the thing, it took him a fair while to fit it through the slot.
From a customer service perspective we make sure where we can we return goods to the owner. If anyone loses property there is an onus on us to ensure they get it back, whether they want it back or not.
I made sure it was well wrapped and took a picture of me posting it as proof of posting as I don’t want any of my staff thinking I’d taken it home for any other reason than to post it back to its owner.
There’s a post box just round the corner from my house so when I finished my shift I thought I’d drop it in there for convenience. I was more worried one of my neighbours might see me so I dashed out of the car with it to try and get it in.
I had a struggle getting it in the post box and it got jammed at one stage as I was trying to force it in and I thought ‘oh lord it’s neither in nor out’. I had to use some force to get it through the opening – I just hope the postman would see the funny side.
Hopefully this reunion has been a joyful rather than mortifying one for this forgetful woman…
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Jules studied English Literature with Creative Writing at Lancaster University before earning her masters in International Relations at Leiden University in The Netherlands (Hoi!). She then trained as a journalist through News Associates in Manchester. Jules has previously worked as a mental health blogger, copywriter and freelancer for various publications.