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Scotland Yard four years after the theft of a painting worth �21
million in today's money at the National Gallery was a Geordie man,
a retired bus driver, Kempton Bunton. He claimed to have
travelled to London to see the painting after reading about its
purchase for the nation to protect it from a proposed sale to an
American collector and decided on impulse to steal the painting the
very next day. But what on earth turns a mild-
mannered OAP into a master criminal? A Professor from the
American university in Rome's studied the Goya theft in detail.
He was 6 1 years old, disabled, retired grandfather who weighed 17
stone. How did he pull it off? According to his version of the
story which may differ from the reality, he used a former men's
lavatory as his point of entry and exit, a ladder from nearby building
sites and managed to climb up the ladder 14 feet and enter through
the lavatory, grab the painting and go out through the same window.
it's just through here? It is. what makes this different from any
other art theft? This was distinctive because it
coincided with the time when organised crime was becoming
interested in art crime and Scotland Yard thought there was a
large Mafia behind this theft. But in fact, this was a crime of
passion, of political motivation, misguided altruism, because this
was not a crime of profit, but about making a point.
Kempton Bunton returned to Newcastle having jettisoned the
frame on the way and stashed the masterpiece in his wardrobe. The
story captivated the nation and became a sensation in the press.
An interest that Bunton kept alive by writing ransom notes demanding
that a charity of his choosing should be set up with �140,000. The
sum the painting had been bought for and an amount he'd calculated
would pay for free television licences for pensioners. Colin
Ashwell was a trainy bobby on his first beat in Newcastle at the time.
We knew he'd been to prison twice for failing to pay his television
licence. I thought that he was a misguided eccentric. Stpwh it never
crossed your mind he would have stole tn painting? No, never in a
hundred years,, I never thought he was capable or thought he'd never
had the ingenuity to do such a thing. He hands himself in, what
happens then? He was tried a the Old Bailey, they charged him with
stealing the Goya and the frame and demanding money with menaces, but
as Bunton only meant to borrow it, he couldn't be convicted of theft.
The old Act said to steal you had to permanently deprive the owner
will have to. Well he didn't, he went to borrow it and give it back
when he was satisfied and he was give an nominal sentence of three
months for stealing the frame because that was never recovered.
Kempton Bunton served his time and retired back into obscurity. But
his actions did have a lasting effect. Directly causing the theft
Act to be redrafted in 1968 to prevent similar crimes. However,
his wish for the over 75s to receive free TV licences wasn't
granted until the year 2000, 24 years too late for Britain's most
unlikely and idealistic art criminal.
He died in 176, almost come plaitly unknown. Except by... The only
remaining witness to his unlikely criminal career back in its
rightful place where it can still be seen today.
Kempton Bunton, the Robin Hood of Tyneside, I suppose you could say,
and we are standing near the remains of another local folk hero,
Rob Roy. McGregor? Yes. He's supposedly buried over there next
to his wife and two sons and he was a wild man in his day, driving the
local lairds absolutely mad. But he died with a Royal pardon because he
was such an entertaining character. Daniel Defoe wrote the Boag, The
Highland Rogue. Jeffly Lendrum was sentenced to 30 months in prison
for trying to smuggle falcon eggs out of the country. What's more
interesting is what happened to the eggs after he was caught -- Jeffrey
Lendrum. The peregrine falcon is the fastest bird on the planet and
highly prized on the black market. There are only 1400 breeding pairs
in the UK, all of which are protected and if harmed
perpetrators face large fines and imprisonment.
Convicted egg thief Jeffrey Lendrum, seen here on footage seized from
his computer, was bold enough to film himself raiding nests in
Canada. He was stopped a at Birmingham Airport trying to
smuggle 14 peregrine eggs to Dubai earlier this year. The subsequent
investigation uncovered shocking evidence of the scale and ambition
of his operation. In the meantime, the police were left with a dilemma
- what to do with the eggs. Andy McWilliam from the wildlife
crime unit was the officer in charge of the case.
Basically, the Counter-Terrorism Unit at Birmingham Airport were
alerted to a male that was acting suspiciously at the airport.
They've taken him to one side and ultimately during the search they
found that he's got birds' eggs strapped to his abdomen, wrapped up
with bandages. Realising the eggs could be viable, the customs
officials tied them up in socks and placed them on their computer
monitors which acted as temporary incubators. We got a local Falconer
to test the eggs at the airport and found out that out of the 14 eggs,
13 were still viable and contained live chicks. We know they were take
none the Rhondda area, South Wales, when I interviewed Mr Lendrum he
admitted he targeted four nest sites. How lucrative is this kind
of business? We suspect based on the intelligence we've got he was
due to make tens of thousands of pounds from this one particular
trip. He's a professional, no doubt about it. He knows exactly what
he's doing, he's highly organised. I think he's doing a tremendous
amount of damage worldwide targeting these valuable birds.
The eggs were them taken by a local Falconer who incubated and
successfully hatched 11 chicks. We were lucky enough to capture the
only footage of the birth of one of But 11 births were not the end of
the story. West Midlands Police were then faced with their next
problem. In Britain, when birds are taken illegally from the wild, they
must wherever possible be released back into the wild. In this case,
that means finding peregrine Foster parents to rear them that have
enough space in their nests to take the extra chicks.
So I'm in Scotland to help James Leonard from the RSPB introduce the
first three chicks back into the wild.
It's a steep cliff. In this yellow bag, hanging from my
belt, I have three ten day old peregrine chicks. Although
difficult to access, our nest site is looking good. It contains one
chick which hatched at the same time as our orphans. And the
location is protected around-the- clock by the Scottish Wildlife
Trust. I can see the chick, it's about to
have three brothers and sisters. That's the first one. Look at this!
A peregrine chick about to start a new life in the Clyde. I'm worried
about the smell on my hands. Is that a problem? Not in the case of
birds. Peregrines, they actually smell, so not a problem at all.
They can't count either, so to them, this is four hungry mouths to feed,
hopefully what comes naturally, they'll feed their young.
It's been a poor start in life for these three chicks, an
extraordinary journey up to here, but they're in a great site, it's a
well protected nest, fingers crossed they'll fledge and then who
knows where they'll go. Job done! What an absolutely aiz maizing
story. We are at the Loch Lomond bird of prey centre with Stuart
Robertson, the proprietor. I have a peregrine hybrid here and you have
something bigger. You've gone quality and I've gone quantity.
What a fantastic bird. It's a beauty. Coming back to my perfectly
formed one here, why is it wearing a balaclava? It's a hood. Falcons
are very nervous creatures, so to come them down, you put a hood on,
they think it's night-time, hoodwinked into thinking it's night.
They calm right down, so he's standing this perfectly calm.
Now over to this big boy? Yes, we saw in the film that birds are
still being taken from the wild but also from sanctuarys and you've had
a problem yourself here? Yes, I had hawks stolen nine weeks ago. Hawks
are easily targeted, they don't require any rings or paperwork and
they've been purely stolen for money. Alison, you have some
expensive feathers here? From a grumpy old bird to a grumpy old man,
Arthur Smith. There are some things that make him smile.
Tonight, I'm expecting to sleep sweetly because I'm staying in the
house where some of the world's favourite bedtime stories were
written. Once upon a time, there were three
little kittens, and their names were... This is Hill Top, the Lake
District home of Beatrix Potter, the author and illustrator of the
tales of Peter Rabbit, Tom Kitten and many more.
Beatrix first visited the Lake District on family holidays with
her parents. She fell in love with the place. Her career began with
letters written from the Lake District holidays, illustrated with
her beautiful sketches and sent to the children of family friends.
She used some of these later in her first book which she fought hard to
get published. It was an immediate success. It was called The Tale of
Peter Rabbit. Peter, who was very naughty, ran straightaway to Mr
McGregor's garden and squeezed under the gate. But her parents did
not approve of her enterprise. Beatrix came from a very wealthy
background, very well-to-do family. Her father was a barrister and
Beatrix was brought up, as would befit a Victorian gentleman's
daughter and daughters of respectable families did not go
into "trade". Things became even frostier when Beatrix grew close to
one of her publishers, Norman Warm. Beatrix was still very much in the
control of her parents and her parents didn't like Norman at all.
Also, they had wanted Beatrix to be available to look after them in
their old age. Her parents finally agreed to the
marriage, but sadly, Norman died before it could ever take place.
But book sales and a small inheritance meant Beatrix could now
afford Hill Top, a working farm in This is where Beatrix wrote.
Writing out of her desk and gaidsing out for inspiration. It
sounds romantic, but actually, beet Rick was a canny woman. She was one
of of the first writers to recognise the possibilities of
mench dice. That finally allowed her the independence she craved. To
allow her independence in farming and conservation and settling into
local life she found love again. She started working together with
William Hellis. They became friendly and when he proposed, they
got married. They married late, she was 47, he
was 42, but they enjoyed 30 years together. I'm sleeping down stairs,
Beatrix would have spent a lot of time in this part of the house. She
loved animals, but she was a farmer and she would not have been adverse
to a touch of lamb hotpot for the summer. Some of the walls are four
feet thick and there were queer noises inside of them, as if there
were a secret staircase. This is a dark, cold house.
You can hear scratchings, but they are just from benign friends of
Samuel Whiskers. That was not the warmest night I
have ever spent. I did have a nightmare involving a Mr McGregor,
but I realise what a remarkable woman, Beatrix Potter was. She led
a very restrictive life, tied to her parents, quite old fashioned.
Yet in sheer ambition in dedication in getting published she created
her own life and her own wealth which was very modern indeed. She
left quite a legacy, including more than 4,000 acres given to the
National Trust to presthearve beautiful landscape, but best of
all, she left 23 tales that more than 100 years later are still read
and loved by children all over the world. Not bad for a late bloomer.
You know this is also 100 years old and still going strong. It is the
SS Sir Walter Scot. It is thought to be the UK's first green
passenger vessel, running on used cooking oil.
You can see wee puffs of steam. That is just as well as this is
Loch Lomond, that is where the majority of Glasgow's drinking
water comes from. Talking of which, do you remember
the band Wet Wet Wet? Yes, Marty Pellow and the boys. They had a
number one hit that went around my head for months and months.
That is the one, but it is also one of the most success songs of all
time. Carrie Grant went to find out the story behind its success. You
will recognise this, the soundtrack to the 1990s.
# I feel it in my fingers # I feel it in my toes. # The song
by Wet Wet Wet, played in Four Weddings and a Funeral, stayed at
number one, longer than any The Beatles song ever did. So, guess
what entitled the song Feel It In My Fingers? Well, it was Sunday
lunch. It was written by Reg Presley from and over in Hampshire.
In the 1960s, he had found fame his band the Troggs, he was famous for
a song called Oscar Wilde. I was doing my song. There was a
painter there. He didn't know how I was. Then this DJ went, I thought,
wild thing. I thought, if that song ain't number one next week, I will
eat my brush. He asked me if I liked it. I said, yeah, then I was
off. That was it. # Wild thing, I think you move me
# But I want to know for sure. # Wildthing wild was a number one hit,
including in America. It happened so fast. Somebody said
what was it like being a number one. I said it was like walking on the
Moon for the first time it is so new so, good. Despite the success,
the Troggs remained at heart, down to earth country boys. For Reg it
was coming back to the routes after weeks away touring that inspired
his most enduring hit. We got back on Sunday. Sunday in
England is lovely. You smell the roast dinner. My daughter was four
years old, running around. The television was on. I heard the Joy,
a Salvation Army band. They were doing their bit with the tambourine,
about love, love, love. It left me with this thing
# I feel it in my fingers # I feel it in my toes... # I got
the bass out and tapped around tonne. It felt right.
The feeling, the mood that you were in, everything was right. I phoned
Chris. I was like, "Chris, I think you ought to come around here, I
think I have got the next hit." Sing it to me like you would have
sung it. # I feel it in my fingers
# I feel it in my toes # Love is all around me
# And so the feeling grows # And of course, Reg was dead right about
the song. It was an international favourite three times over, first
for the Troggs, then for REM and then Reg received in the early
1990s, an unexpected demo. I was drinking a cup of tea, and
their chords, their stoil, wow! The tea went all over the room! As soon
as he opened his mouth and sung it, I thought, yes!
# I feel it in my fingers. # When you bring a song into the world it
is like having a child. They ask if they can do it, but I say yes, only
if they look after it. The song won three Ivor Novella but
after 15 weeks firmly at number one, it was withdrawn from the sales,
simply to give other records a chance! It would have been the
biggest single ever. I would have loved to have done it.
15 weeks is still pretty good?! is great.
You were going for the record! sort of feeds you that song.
I just wonder if I will be there with it in 20 years' time. I won't
be, but I wonder if it will carry Another thing that stood the test
of time is Inch Maghogn Priory, behind us here in the heart of Lake
of Menteth. It has been here since the 13th century. Robert Bruce and
Mary Queen Of Scots came here to get away from the hustle and bustle
of life, but, with a bit more noise, and needing a bit more peace and
quiet, the perfect place to send Dom Littlewood. This is a story
about what's important in life and what you want from it. A journey
that begins with a plane, another plane, a car journey, a ferry,
another car journey and a final ferry to Fetlar. The little
shetshet shet, closer to Norway than Glasgow! -- closer to the --
the little Shetland island that is closer to Norway than it is to
Glasgow. We have come to meet a couple who
came and never went home again. I am here four years later to see how
they are getting up. You look lovely. You can't complain to wake
up to that every day, can you? feel lucky to live here.
When the One Show went out, there was less than 50 people living
here? Well, lots of people have shown an interest. We are back up
to 70 now, so it is looking promising.
The island's population is less than a third that it was 100 years
ago. It is a way of life that the islanders want to keep going. Isla
has been here for many years. That puts her to the left. That
puts her to the right. That way! It is not moving! No, she
is confused. How long have you been here? 20 years and I love it there
is no traffic. Everybody gets about their business. You feel safe here
it is a very good place to bring up children. Bob has been delivering
letters on the island for over 13 years.
How do you feel about the fact that the population of the island has
increased? We really needed it. We needed the young folk to come back
here. Your rounds are longer? I still
have the same amount of hours. I come home from work.
I will be doing this only for another month or so, any way, I'm
due to retire. Oh, no! It will be the next person
that comes along who has to think about newcomers.
The new postman is James, who moved his family here to Fetlar from the
Cotswolds two years ago. Why did you change your lifestyle?
I worked in the construction industry. I was made redundant in
two years. I got a map out, I closed my eyes and Fetlar came out.
We were in the rat race and wanted to change our lives. I would have
been forever thinking what if if we had not made the move.
Jade, what do you think of it? love it. Everyone is great. You
don't feel like an outer. You don't have a regret to what row
have done? No. Not at all. You, Sarah? I miss my family, but
still, I would not go back down south. Now a British movie with a
�5 million budget is being filmed right here on Fetlar. That could be
its chance to put itself on the map. The film is a drama about a remote
island life. The producers are here holding auditions for the movie,
attracting folk from Fetlar and across the Shetlands.
What is the storey about? The story was ready to go, without a location.
I was waiting for a plane to Aberdeen. I looked up and there was
a BBC programme on. It was the Shetlands. I thought this was where
the movie had to be set. It was not long before a few
familiar Fetlar faces had to face the panel too.
You have gone greater, it suits you. You look the same, you do, you look
great. I have had my life put on hold for
ten years, it that make these sound bitter, then I am sorry.
I'm not going to argue with you! Not as nervus as I thought I might
be. Do you think you have it? Optimism! Yes, for sure! Whether I
get the part or not is eril vent. This film will be good for the
island. Back inside the auditions were
hotting up. With one role especially for man's own special
friend. What do you have about you that is
special? He eats. Eats a lot. the panel had spotted who is top
dog here... OK, Byron, you are in! If a dog can get a part, then why
not me?! I think they have given you the wrong outfit! Take it in
your own time. The lure of money, ambition and
success has slowly drained the lifeblood of this island, Fetlar.
Although, with the arrival of you good people, that blood will once
again course through. Veins of Fetlar.
That was terrific. But I won't be needing this, will
I? The experience of coming to Fetlar is one that I shall always
remember. I have learned to appreciate the tranquility and
lifestyle here and you never know, this city boy may well be coming
back soon. Thank you very much, Dom. You know
I think that I will be looking back here and coming back too. Looking