A Fife man has been left shocked after police contacted him to say his wallet had been handed in – 17 years after it was stolen.
The thief targeted Ryan Seymour, a graphic designer from Lochgelly, in a pub in Dunfermline in 2004.
However, to his amazement on Saturday, he received a Facebook message from Fife Police telling him the wallet had been found in a bush near to the pub and had been handed in.
Ryan initially thought it was 20 years ago it was stolen but later remembered it was 2004.
Well ladies & gents. You might remember a few weeks ago, the police got in touch to say my wallet had been handed in, that was stolen 20 YEARS AGO. Well. Here it is….. pic.twitter.com/EButW5NfMG
— Ryan Seymour (@ryanseymour1983) May 29, 2021
Ryan, 37, said the wallet was “like a time capsule” as its contents show how much things have changed both in his life and the world itself since then.
The father-of-one said: “It was stolen when I went to a pub in Dunfermline in 2004. So it was actually 17 years ago, not 20, which is what I guessed when the police contacted me.
Wallet ‘really is a time capsule’
“They messaged me through Facebook Messenger, and funnily enough, I did remember it happening, even though it was all those years ago.
“It was stolen from a pub called The Elizabethan, which is still there as well. It was found in a bush very near the pub.
“It really is a time capsule. I’m surprised how I remembered all the cards and stuff that are inside it.”
A glimpse into the past
The contents included an ID card of a fresh-faced Ryan in his old job working in card services for the Bank of Scotland in Pitreavie in Fife.
There was also a Switch debit card, a type of card which was discontinued in 2009 and replaced with Visa Debit. Some Twitter users had no idea what the term ‘Switch it’ even meant.
Oh that’s what that means😂older customers been saying that to me for ages,never knew what it means until now 😂
— antony pitt (@antdpitt) May 31, 2021
VHS rental card
Another find was a Burton store card, the clothing firm which went into administration this year and whose parent company was bought over.
In the days of Netflix and online streaming, physically renting video tapes seems like a distant memory but a Spar home video membership card found in the wallet was a reminder.
Not expecting to get any money back, Ryan joked: “I remember it had £60 in it when it was stolen, so I’m gutted.
‘No idea who handed it in’
“I have no idea who handed it in, unfortunately.”
Some of the contents are so dated, Ryan couldn’t even remember what they are for. One card from One Stop Phone Shop offers “unlimited ring tones and logos”.
“I honestly have no idea what that ring tone card is,” said Ryan.
I'm not sure there could have been something more early 2000s in your wallet than this
— Rob (@RobTheFiveNine) May 30, 2021
One Twitter user said about the phone card: “I’m not sure there could have been something more early 2000s in your wallet than this”, to which Ryan replied: “I know. Don’t even remember having it. Maybe the thief slipped it in there.”
Ryan said it was remarkable that the wallet had turned up after such a long period time, and that police had traced him.
The wallet has his name inside it in gold lettering, and was a gift from his mum.
He said: “I’m surprised, given the obvious age of the wallet, police could be bothered to track me down.
“I’m surprised they didn’t bin it.
‘One in a million’
“I wouldn’t imagine any police seeing that in all their years of serving. It’s one in a million. It could well be some kind of record.”
Has life changed much since 2004 for Ryan?
“Aye just a bit,” he said.
“I’m married with a two-year-old now. Back then it was party time.”
‘It is amazing – I still can’t believe it’
When asked if it was annoying having cancelled his bank cards, only to have them returned, albeit 17 years later, he said, tongue-in-cheek: “Tell me about it.
“Load of hassle I could have done without.
“But it is indeed amazing. I still can’t believe it.”