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'I have been listening and reading all your thoughts' - Belton's Banksy opens up on bike craze

PUBLISHED: 15:13 20 June 2019 | UPDATED: 15:13 20 June 2019

A pink bike by a lamppost in Belton, one of many left at the side of the village's roads. Picture: Thomas Chapman

A pink bike by a lamppost in Belton, one of many left at the side of the village's roads. Picture: Thomas Chapman

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It started off with a single bike chained to a lamppost and has since escalated into the talk of a Norfolk village.

Ten bikes were left by lamp posts on New Road, before later being removed. Picture: Thomas ChapmanTen bikes were left by lamp posts on New Road, before later being removed. Picture: Thomas Chapman

Now a mystery person has claimed responsibilty for leaving numerous bikes dotted around Belton.

In a message left sellotaped to a lamppost in the village, Belton's very own Banksy opened up about the village's bike craze.

The letter said: "To everyone of Belton for all that love and the few that don't, I have a large collection of bikes that I have saved from bins and the backs of people sheds.

"I will not comment or message about more bikes so if we get any more it is not from me."

A pink bike by a lamp post in Belton, the latest to be left at the side of the village's roads. Picture: Thomas ChapmanA pink bike by a lamp post in Belton, the latest to be left at the side of the village's roads. Picture: Thomas Chapman

Last Thursday, council workers removed several bikes which had been attached to lampposts for numerous weeks.

But, at the weekend several new ones appeared in the village to the amusement of some and the frustration of many.

In the letter, the mystery person addressed residents' concerns saying they had been listening to their opinions and will remove the bikes if the village starts to look "untidy".

Councillor for the Lothingland ward, Adrian Myers, said he was wasn't particularly concerned with the bikes but explained many residents were unhappy with the issue.

A pink bike by a lamp post in Belton, the latest to be left at the side of the village's roads. Picture: Thomas ChapmanA pink bike by a lamp post in Belton, the latest to be left at the side of the village's roads. Picture: Thomas Chapman

"Most of the people I have spoken to are not in favour of the bikes but I'm fairly laid-back," he said.

"I can however understand the concerns of some."

Mr Myers suggested the bikes should be collected and then auctioned off for charity.

In the letter the mystery person explained he intends to do this and raise money for the charity Sands which supports people in the UK affected by the death of a baby.

In the final paragraph of the letter the person said they wish to remain anonymous but residents will be given the opportunity to take a bike home.

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Rick Watson, who lives in Fern Gardens, said he had no problem with the ongoing bike saga.

He said: "I think it's just a bit of fun."

"Obviously some people might find it a bit naughty but it's a bit of a laugh and, at the end of the day, somebody is trying to make people happy."

The letter in full;

To everyone of Belton for all that love and the few that don't, I have a large collection of bikes that I have saved from bins and the backs of people sheds. I will not comment or message about more bikes so if we get any more it is not from me.

I have been listening and reading all your thoughts on the bikes, if I feel it is starting to look untidy I will start removing bikes. If people would like to add to the bikes though please feel free to do so in your own way.

To the councillors who question the bikes, they are not dumped, they are not rubbish, they are by law my property and without removal letters shall be my property and a small gift to all in Belton who like and enjoy them - old and young alike.

I have been in contact with GYB services and hopefully the matter will be resolved.

As for auctioning off for charity, this is an idea I have had since the start but the bikes are worthless and I will not have people tell me where money from something I am doing is going to go. I have a charity in mind. While I know it has not benefited anyone in this village it has helped soo many families. Any and all money should go here. Sands.org.uk

I wish to remain anonymous at all costs so If you see me look the other way. Once I feel I have done enough I will remove all locks and give people 24 hours to take a bike of their choosing home. Any left will be collected and disposed of in a correct manner.

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