Appeal to find £2,000 bike that was stolen 'right in front of' mum-of-one in Commercial Road, Portsmouth, leaving her 'devastated'

A ‘DEVASTATED’ mum-of-one is appealing for help to find a £2,000 bike that was stolen right in front of her in Commercial Road – on the same day she was travelling to France for a cycling holiday.

Monday, 11th April 2022, 10:19 am
Updated Monday, 11th April 2022, 3:03 pm

‘Upset’ Katharine Barker, from Bristol, travelled to Portsmouth on Saturday on the train in order to board a ferry to Saint-Malo with her eight-year-old son and partner Henry, along with their bikes, for a long-awaited trip that had been pushed back due to Covid.

Before heading to Portsmouth International Port the trio visited the Cascades Shopping Centre so Henry could pick up some Euros.

Communications officer and keen cyclist Katharine waited by the fountain with all three bikes in front of her.

Left Katharine Barker, right her Canyon bike that was stolen in Commercial Road on April 9, 2022

But ‘suddenly’ a young man appeared from behind her, grabbed her bike and cycled off.

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Katharine, 44, told The News: ‘He came from out of nowhere, it all happened in a flash.

‘I wasn’t close enough to grab him so I screamed out. But it wasn’t very busy because it was about 5pm and the shops were closing.’

Katharine Barker's Canyon bike that was stolen from Commercial Road on April 9, 2022

Katherine bought the purple Canyon bike in November for about £2,000 and had spent months customising it, including fitting a new seat.

It was also loaded with new pannier bags containing a pair of her son’s new shoes.

The day of the theft was Katharine’s birthday and left her feeling ‘violated.’

‘It felt worse because I literally saw it happen in front of me and I couldn’t stop it,’ she said.

She called the police immediately but was told there was not much they could do.

The family made it to Saint-Malo but Katharine will be renting a bike while there so they can still go out.

She described the thief as a young man in his late teens or early 20s, of slim build and wearing grey trousers and a black cap.

Katharine added: ‘I don’t think I will get my bike back but it’s important to raise awareness about this to prevent it happening to others.

‘Maybe I was being naive but I didn’t expect my bike to be taken from right in front of me.’

A spokeswoman for Hampshire police said: ‘Local neighbourhood officers are currently following the lines of enquiry available to them in order to identify the person responsible, including CCTV scoping in the area.

‘Our local teams will also seek to establish if there are any patterns or links to any other similar incidents in the area.

‘We would encourage anyone with information to contact us on 101 quoting 44220139919.’

Or information can be submitted via