100-year-old war veteran left shaken after house burgled while he was in hospital

Connor Parker
·3 min read
Len Parry served in the Second World War (SWNS).
Len Parry served in the Second World War (SWNS).

A 100-year-old war veteran has been left shaken after burglars got into his home while he was at hospital and stole his safe containing £3,000 in cash.

Former RAF flying boats pilot Len Parry, who escaped from the Japanese after being taken prisoner in Singapore, house was burgled earlier this month.

Father-of-three Parry had checked into Bradford Royal Infirmary on 4 February for a small procedure but lost his balance as he was taking his jumper off.

He banged his head on the floor which caused bruising to his face and doctors recommended he stay in overnight for observations.

When he got back Parry said did not notice his safe was missing until a couple of days after he got home and checked on it in the spare room.

Parry found his safe missing a few days after getting home. (SWNS)
Parry found his safe missing a few days after getting home. (SWNS)

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He said the safe was bolted to the floor and anyone wanting to steal would have needed tools to disconnect it.

The widow, who has lived in the same house in Skipton, North Yorkshire since 1963 when it was first built, said he was "angry" when he discovered the safe had gone.

He added: "The strange thing is there was no damage to any doors or windows and nothing else had been touched and no sign of a break-in.

"Drawers and cupboards hadn't been opened. It's baffling.

"There is a key box outside but you have to punch a code in to open it and the key was still inside."

Parry said he had around £3,000 in the safe which he had for emergencies and when he wanted to give his grandchildren cash for their birthdays.

He also had bank books and his driving license in there as well as some premium bonds.

He added: "My son and daughter have sorted the details with the bank now and I know the premium bonds are safe.

"My son-in-law is also in the police force at Keighley so he has been helping.

"The money's gone and forgotten now and I'm not frightened of anyone coming back because there is nothing of any real value here. You don't need valuables when you're 100.

"I would like whoever did it to be caught, though. It really upset me for a few days."

Parry was taken prisoner in Singapore during World War Two but managed to flee when Japanese soldiers got drunk while guarding the captives.

North Yorkshire Police launched an appeal for information about suspicious activity in Long Meadow, Skipton.

A force spokesman said: "Officers are appealing for information about any unusual activity seen in the area between these dates, especially on February 4 and 5.

"Also if anyone has found, or knows the whereabouts of, a small brown coloured digital safe around a cubic foot in size."

Anyone with information is urged to call police on 101, quoting reference number 12210058787.

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