Miranda Essex, a third year geographer at Hertford, had her bike stolen on Sunday evening, only for it to be spotted and chased down in town the following day by Angelo Fernandez, a heroic Hertford porter.
The bike was one of many to have been stolen from outside Hertford College on Catte Street, in a spate of recent thefts. It was taken at about 8.30pm on Sunday. Essex had reported the theft to the Lodge, but assumed she would never see the bike again.
Luckily, one Hertford porter was walking down Broad Street on Monday afternoon, on his day off, when he recognised her bike being ridden by an unidentified man. He chased after the person, shouting “That’s not your bike!” On hearing this, the perpetrator stopped, threw down the bike and fled the scene. Fernandez then returned the bike to Robert Dyas. He informed Essex of the events the following morning, and she later picked it up.
Essex was hyperbolic in her praise of her beloved porter. She said, “I’m amazed that Angelo was able to recognise my bike even when it was being ridden.” She added, “It’s way beyond the call of duty for him to accost a thief on my behalf and I’m very grateful. He’s saved me a lot of money and reunited me with my trusty (albeit unstylish) mountain bike!’
Dave Haxell, Head Porter at Hertford College, was equally impressed with Fernandez. He said, “Of all the bikes we have outside, it’s amazing that he recognised Miranda’s, especially as it’s not even a particularly unusual one. That it was being cycled makes it all the more impressive!”
He mused, “What a guy! You could say he’s an angel.” Haxell mentioned how lucky he thought Miranda was, acknowledging that it was a very unusual incident, and adding, “A Hertford porter is never off duty.”
Ben Williams, a third year English student at Hertford whose bike was purloined from outside college earlier this term, commented, ‘If only I had been so lucky to have a knight in shining armour rescue my bike!’