Artist Charles Rowbotham has offered one of his paintings as a reward for the return of ‘CyclingMooKay’, the Cycling UK cow stolen from Box Hill on Friday 19 August. Charlie created this beautiful heifer for Cycling Uk, taking his inspiration from the Surrey Hills landscape.
Sadly ‘Cycling Moo Kay’ was stolen from the top of Box Hill on Friday 19 August.
Police are investigating after the life-size cow, painted with Surrey Hills cycling scenes, was unbolted from its plinth and taken some time between 8pm yesterday and 6am today.
Cycling Moo Kay is one of more than 60 brightly-coloured cows which have been on show across the county this summer as part of the Surrey Hills CowParade. All of them will be auctioned off in the autumn, with funds being split between the individual charities who have sponsored them and the Surrey Hills Trust Fund.
Paul Tuohy, Chief Executive of Guildford-based Cycling UK, said: “I’m devastated to learn of the theft of Cycling Moo Kay. One of our members, Doug Clare, presented her to us earlier this summer to not only help with some valuable fund-raising for our charity, but also to share a bit of the fun that is cycling.
“Since then she’s played an iconic part in many of the South East’s cycling activities – from watching the thousands of RideLondon riders from her previous position on Box Hill, to even venturing up to Green Park to take part in the capital’s FreeCycle event.
“I sincerely hope that we are able to recover her, and would urge any members of the public who know anything about her disappearance to contact the Surrey police on 101.”
A second cow at the Box Hill site – Sustrans’ Bunnyhop, sponsored by Openhouse Creative – was removed from its plinth but not stolen.
Tim Metson, Surrey Hills CowParade Leader, said: “The theft of Cycling Moo Kay is heartless and it’s really important we find her because she should be going to auction in the next couple of months to raise much-needed funds for Cycling UK. This has been such a well-support event and it’s a huge disappointment both for the charity and ourselves. Unfortunately Box Hill is quite remote, which must have made Cycling Moo Kay a relatively easy target.”
Doug Clare, chairman of G-Bug, the Guildford Cycling Campaign, said: “I’d like to appeal to whoever has stolen Cycling Moo Kay to return her to her rightful place. I can’t imagine she can be sold on or hidden easily, and the whole point of her existence is to raise funds for a very worthy cause.
“Cycling UK, formerly known as CTC, is the oldest transport organisation in the world and has been promoting cycling and protecting cyclists since 1878. As an avid cyclist myself, it seemed a natural choice to support the great work they do as the UK’s national cycling charity – especially as their National Head Office is in Guildford.”
The Box Hill zig-zag climb is used by thousands of cyclists every year and achieved global fame when it featured during the London 2012 Olympics road race.
Please help us to find CyclingMooKay – report any information to Surrey Police on 101.