Twitter helps to recover stolen bike

£3,000 bike stolen in London turns up in Spain, but is reunited with owner after being spotted by Twitter user

James Vernon's stolen Parlee

A London cyclist is back riding his rare bike worth upwards of £3,000 after a social media post helped to trace the stolen back in Spain.

James Vernon was left devastated last July when his precious Parlee Z1 was taken from his Islington flat between daylight hours of 8am and 1pm, with the Metropolitan Police unable to find the perpetrator and the cycle.

As so many of us who have been unfortunate enough to have been victims of bike theft do, James took to Twitter to notify the public of his missing bike.

He tweeted @StolenRide - a Twitter community for Londoners who have had their bikes stolen – but did not hear back from anyone with information.

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That was until Spaniard Armand Paul Kabarec-Quiroz noticed the tweet in October and recognised the bike having seen it himself in Southern Europe.

James flew out to Spain to collect his fixed gear bike and is backing riding it around the capital.

Richard Cantle, the founder of Stolen Ride, said: “I could not be happier for James and am thankful for the work that Armand put into it making it possible.”

In 2013 GB track sprinter Lewis Oliva had his Pinarello Paris road bike stolen outside a café in Gatley, Manchester, but the bike was returned a few days later when a friend of Oliva's saw it for sale on Facebook.

Chris Marshall-Bell

Chris first started writing for Cycling Weekly in 2013 on work experience and has since become a regular name in the magazine and on the website. Reporting from races, long interviews with riders from the peloton and riding features drive his love of writing about all things two wheels.


Probably a bit too obsessed with mountains, he was previously found playing and guiding in the Canadian Rockies, and now mostly lives in the Val d’Aran in the Spanish Pyrenees where he’s a ski instructor in the winter and cycling guide in the summer. He almost certainly holds the record for the most number of interviews conducted from snowy mountains.