Band stole van full of instruments in Bishop Auckland

The Mercians, a five-piece band who pride themselves on delivering music to schools across the UK to promote mental health awareness, were parked in Bishop Auckland on Sunday evening (September 17).

But when they returned to collect the vehicle from the Bondgate North car park in the city on Monday (September 18), the vehicle had disappeared along with the band’s instruments.

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The band, who all quit their full-time jobs just two weeks ago, are now making an urgent appeal to everyone who saw the van – and stressing that everything in the van is “everything they own.”

Speaking about the incident, the band’s lead singer Matt said: “We got back to the car park and at first we thought it was a joke.”

“Then we realized what had happened, we banded together and started contacting the police and insurers.”

The Northern Echo: The van that was stolen in Bishop AucklandThe van that was stolen in Bishop Auckland (Image: THE MERCIANS)

The incident occurred on the band’s return from Scotland, where they had been playing concerts in schools for a week.

Despite fears they will have to cancel shows in County Durham and the wider North East this week, generous schools have stepped in and loaned them equipment.

The Northern Echo: The MerciansThe Mercians (Image: THE MERCIANS)

However, the band, who have offered a £1,000 reward for the safe return of their van, are now questioning the longer-term plan for their UK tour.

So far the band has seen an outpouring of support on social media, with a post about the stolen van being shared over 2,000 times, while music industry names such as Reverend and the Makers and Andrew Cushin have sent their support for the band.

Marcians guitarist Owen added: “We’ve had a huge response in a short space of time, with almost 150,000 people seeing our post. Hopefully the van will be found.”

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“Our livelihood was in this van – we quit our jobs two weeks ago.”

As well as online support, the band received help from business owner Sam Zair, who gave them a free breakfast after The Mercians stayed over Zair’s Cafe in Bishop Auckland.

It is hoped that insurance will cover the stolen vehicle – but if anyone has any information about the stolen van they are asked to contact police on 101 and also contact The Mercians on social media. Band stole van full of instruments in Bishop Auckland

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