Over the years removal men have uncovered some weird and wonderful things in their vans and trucks, from deceased pets to the items from the wrong house.
The most common unusual item by far is deceased pets, where many house movers confess to digging up their dead animals in the back garden to rebury them at the new property. One mover even admitted to going through this process a total of four times, as she reburied her old dog in four different homes. But, live pets have also been common too. James Robertson, from Anthony Ward Thomas Master Removers confessed that, upon finding a cat asleep in an upstairs bedroom they packed him into the final removal lorry from London to Devon. Upon reuniting the cat with the family, he was informed that this wasn’t actually their cat.
Robertson has also described, upon moving a client from France to the UK, that after arriving back at headquarters he found 10 illegal immigrants in the back of the lorry. Illegal immigrants are a common problem for any sort of freight moving between France and the UK, with many choosing to stow themselves away in car boots, the backs of lorries and vans or even cling to the underneath drive shafts and wheel axels.
Mark Prout, the managing director of Aussie Man & Van, recounted to the Telegraph how he once sent three men to a job on the King’s Road. A call from his client, however, revealed that the men had gone to the King’s Road in Chelsea instead of Richmond, and after being let in by a housekeep who spoke very little English had cleaned out the entire first floor before they realised.
Removal men are sometimes faced with a bizarre collection of items, whether their clients are hoarders or history, art or vehicle enthusiasts. UK removal companies have moved marble fireplaces from the Vatican, a vintage Aston Martin DB2, a tractor and even a large section of the Berlin Wall. You can only wonder what will turn up next.