Penarth Leisure Centre reviews security after bag theft from locker
9:02am Thursday 17th October 2013 in Penarth news
A PENARTH woman has vowed never to use Penarth Leisure Centre again after she had her bag stolen from her locker while she was swimming with her three-year-old son.
The woman, who did not want to be named, said she felt “violated” that someone was allowed to take her bag from her locker.
The theft came after a person purporting to be her cousin told a member of staff that they needed the bag for an upcoming court date, and they were subsequently allowed to take the bag from the locker without the woman’s permission.
The person was allowed to take the bag as they were able to identify the contents of the locker before it was opened. The bag has been described as a “Cath Kidston branded nappy bag with cowboys and Indians print on it, with a stripy strap”.
Parkwood Leisure, which runs Penarth Leisure Centre on behalf of the Vale of Glamorgan Council, has introduced a new policy involving more identity checks in a bid to prevent this from happening again.
The woman, who learnt to swim at the leisure centre herself, added that shortly after she complained the police were notified and a female member of staff offered her clothing from the lost property department.
“I felt really embarrassed and annoyed,” she said.
“I will never go back there or let my son go back there.
“I feel completely violated as I paid for the locker thinking the leisure centre had laws to protect your stuff.”
She added: “I just want them to change their policy and be more aware of security, and to look after their customers.
“I wouldn’t feel safe going back there ever again. It’s sad as I’ve grown up in Penarth and learnt to swim there myself too.”
Colleen Bevan, regional director Wales of Parkwood Leisure, which operates Penarth Leisure Centre on behalf of the Vale of Glamorgan Council, said: “We can confirm that we are aware of an incident involving the theft of a bag from a locker at Penarth Leisure Centre on Tuesday, October 1. The security of our customers’ property is important to us and we take our responsibilities extremely seriously. A full apology has been issued to the customer affected and we will be compensating her for the loss of the bag and its contents.
“As soon as we became aware of the theft we informed the police. They subsequently visited the site to view CCTV footage as part of their investigation into the matter.
“As a result of this incident we have introduced a new policy, whereby anyone claiming to have lost their locker key will not only be asked to describe the contents of the locker but will also undergo further identity checks to confirm they are the rightful owner.”
A spokesperson from South Wales Police confirmed that they were investigating the theft of a bag from Penarth Leisure Centre and were currently monitoring CCTV footage.