A TRAILER containing historic railway artefacts was allegedly stolen outside a Brierley Hill hotel.

The trailer, which was attached to a Ford Focus, was parked outside the Travelodge on Dudley Road when it was reportedly snatched on Wednesday evening (August 4).

Owner Chris Pratt said the trailer contained two railway signal box boards which are of historic interest.

One sign reads ‘Weston-Super-Mare East Box’ and ‘Junction Lock South', which Chris picked up at an auction.

Dudley News: One of the signs which is around 100 years old.One of the signs which is around 100 years old.

The plates are over 100 years old and would have been used on signalling equipment for Great Western Railway in the Bristol area.

The items have both a historic and sentimental value for Chris, who is an avid collector of railway signalling artefacts and used to work as a signal inspector in the south west.

Dudley News: The historic signs were picked up at an auction.The historic signs were picked up at an auction.

Chris hails from Taunton in Somerset and was staying in Dudley on his way to visit the Kidderminster Railway Museum.

He said: “I parked the car, put the locks on the trailer. I could look out the window and see it. Then I looked out the window and the trailer had gone.”

Chris was devastated to see that the trailer had been cut away from his Ford Focus, leaving him without his trailer or his much-loved railway signs.

He is now appealing for anyone with information to get in touch with police.

Anyone with information to help the investigation should contact West Midlands Police and quote crime reference number 20/134291/21.