Author Topic: What would you do if you found a lost key?  (Read 19678 times)

Cudzoziemiec

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What would you do if you found a lost key?
« on: 18 June, 2010, 01:14:20 am »
While we were walking along the street this morning, Mrs Cudzo spotted a car key that someone had dropped on the pavement. There were no cars of that make parked anywhere nearby, so it could have come from anywhere. I suggested we should ideally take it to the police, but didn't have a clue where the nearest police station was, and didn't know what they would do with it anyway. TBH, the idea of maybe having to deal with some police bureaucracy was off-putting, too. So we left the key with the owner of a cafe very close to where we found it. It was quite distinctive, being on a large key ring of a - non-local - football team, and being for a make of car that's not overly popular, so hopefully if the owner does turn up they'll be easily identifiable. But I'm wondering if people have better ideas for dealing with such things?
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Biggsy

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Re: What would you do if you found a lost key?
« Reply #1 on: 18 June, 2010, 01:28:43 am »
I think it's better to take it to the nearest police station*, because that's one place the owner will definitely check if they're desparate.  The police might not mind if you don't want to give your name and address - at least they didn't when I handed in a wallet once.

* Unless the keyring has a Tesco Clubcard attached - in which case, take it to a Tescos.  They offer to try and get it back to the owner.
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Re: What would you do if you found a lost key?
« Reply #2 on: 18 June, 2010, 02:15:25 am »
Last time I found a car key lying in the road, I was interrupted by the grateful owner while still at the looking-for-a-nearby-car-of-appropriate-make stage.  As it was parked next to a hospital, the logical course of action was a no-brainer and I would have handed it in at the porters' lodge after determining the registration of the car, if possible.

In the absence of anything more obvious, I think the police station is probably the best way to go.  Or, if you've found the car, locking them in the car might be a reasonable option (the AA and similar are fairly good at non-destructively breaking into cars, and given the hassle and cost of replacement keys for modern cars, that does at least guarantee they get back to the owner). 
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Re: What would you do if you found a lost key?
« Reply #3 on: 18 June, 2010, 05:11:34 am »
When I lost my handbag (left it on the ground in an open car park instead of putting it in the car with the groceries!) someone handed it into the nearest shop.  They were in the process of walking it to the police station when I made contact by ringing my phone that was in the bag.  And they wouldn't take a reward (it had two phones, two wallets and all our keys in it - all still completely intact!)
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Julian

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Re: What would you do if you found a lost key?
« Reply #4 on: 18 June, 2010, 05:15:41 am »
Police station for me too, if only because that's the place I'd look first if I was looking.  I once took a wallet complete with passport, holiday money, travellers cheques etc etc etc into the police station and was handing it over to the desk officer when its tearful owner showed up. 

Were you in the UK or in India?  I don't know what I'd do abroad. 

Re: What would you do if you found a lost key?
« Reply #5 on: 18 June, 2010, 08:01:15 am »
Keys are a difficult one. Cop shop would be ideal as there's not a lot else you can do. I think handing the key to the nearest cafe was an OK thing to do. I've only ever lost my keys once and the next day I had a pretty good idea were it must have been ie the pub  :P  I went back and they had them behind the bar. Disco. So hopefully the owner of the key will retrace their steps and end up at the cafe.

A bit OT, but amusing - when I was a kid, my dad was terrible for losing car keys. I remember one time in Dorset we got out of the car, dad locked up and promptly dropped the key down a drain! We simply walked to some key cutting type shop and he asked "Do you have a key for a 1969 Vauxhall Viva?" The bloke said "Yes" and that was it! Job done.

Another time, my dad came to pick me up from whatever I'd been doing. The hideous beige Austin Maestro was unmistakable as it approached. I got in and things weren't quite right. "Dad! This isn't our car!" It was a company car and was only one digit out on the plate as the company had bought a job lot. He'd simply got in someone else's car! The key still worked though!
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Re: What would you do if you found a lost key?
« Reply #6 on: 18 June, 2010, 08:38:30 am »
In the UK if you find something with an identifier on it (e.g. keys with a Clubcard keyfob, work pass, cheque book etc) you can stick it in the nearest postbox. Royal Mail has a "returning lost things" department at each main sorting office whose job it is to return such items to their owners if possible.


Oaky

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Re: What would you do if you found a lost key?
« Reply #7 on: 18 June, 2010, 09:01:35 am »
Keys are a difficult one. Cop shop would be ideal as there's not a lot else you can do. I think handing the key to the nearest cafe was an OK thing to do. I've only ever lost my keys once and the next day I had a pretty good idea were it must have been ie the pub  :P  I went back and they had them behind the bar. Disco. So hopefully the owner of the key will retrace their steps and end up at the cafe.

So the slightly modified advice is: Police Station, unless the keyring has a pink stetson attached, in which case, nearest hostelry.
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Re: What would you do if you found a lost key?
« Reply #8 on: 18 June, 2010, 09:58:50 am »
Lost key? Maybe you need a lost chord to keep it safe..
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Cudzoziemiec

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Re: What would you do if you found a lost key?
« Reply #9 on: 18 June, 2010, 11:48:04 pm »
So, police station best. Trouble is, that's what I would have done if I'd had any idea where the nearest one was, or if a police officer had happened to come past at that time. Even one of those Community Support bods would have been useful in this case.
Were you in the UK or in India?  I don't know what I'd do abroad. 
UK. Handing anythng over to the police in India would be a pretty certain way of ensuring it either sat in a dusty corner for evermore or left in a policeman's pocket, I'm afraid. BTW, other options are also available for my location!
In the UK if you find something with an identifier on it (e.g. keys with a Clubcard keyfob, work pass, cheque book etc) you can stick it in the nearest postbox. Royal Mail has a "returning lost things" department at each main sorting office whose job it is to return such items to their owners if possible.
Wow, that's a handy thing to know. And quite amazing, really. Unfortunately in this case there was nothing directly identifiable, only an Aston Villa key ring.
Lost key? Maybe you need a lost chord to keep it safe..
Bangalore has a West of Chord Road, will that do?

Bobb's story reminds me of two of my own experiences.
I once dropped my motorbike key into a rubbish bin in a Tesco's car park. And couldn't find it. I had to ask a member of staff to unlock(!) the top of the bin and sift through the crap in there until I spotted it.
And I once left my wallet on the conveyor belt at the checkout of a Polish supermarket. I have an excuse; black wallet, black conveyor, dim lighting, and only been in the country a short time so... ok, that last one's not a factor. Fortunately the elderly couple behind me in the queue alerted me to my lapse. Perhaps they had better sight than me!
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Re: What would you do if you found a lost key?
« Reply #10 on: 19 June, 2010, 03:54:28 pm »
Another time, my dad came to pick me up from whatever I'd been doing. The hideous beige Austin Maestro was unmistakable as it approached. I got in and things weren't quite right. "Dad! This isn't our car!" It was a company car and was only one digit out on the plate as the company had bought a job lot. He'd simply got in someone else's car! The key still worked though!

When I worked at Blackbushe Airport, I found that my Mini keys could unlock 2 Piper Chieftains, several Grumman AA5's and 3 or 4 Cessna 152's.

Handy things, Mini's.  ;)
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Re: What would you do if you found a lost key?
« Reply #11 on: 19 June, 2010, 04:11:48 pm »
Another time, my dad came to pick me up from whatever I'd been doing. The hideous beige Austin Maestro was unmistakable as it approached. I got in and things weren't quite right. "Dad! This isn't our car!" It was a company car and was only one digit out on the plate as the company had bought a job lot. He'd simply got in someone else's car! The key still worked though!

When I worked at Blackbushe Airport, I found that my Mini keys could unlock 2 Piper Chieftains, several Grumman AA5's and 3 or 4 Cessna 152's.

Handy things, Mini's.  ;)

Oh yes - I remember my Mini door key would open my mate's Rover P6. So I'd sneak round his at night and leave a post it note with really embarrassing things written/drawn on it in the passenger foot well, so when he picked up this girl he was desperately trying to shag, it was the first thing she saw  :demon:  :P
Those wonderful norks are never far from my thoughts, oh yeah!

Re: What would you do if you found a lost key?
« Reply #12 on: 21 June, 2010, 04:18:29 pm »
....Or, if you've found the car, locking them in the car might be a reasonable option (the AA and similar are fairly good at non-destructively breaking into cars, and given the hassle and cost of replacement keys for modern cars, that does at least guarantee they get back to the owner).  

I can see were you're coming from, but if the owner, or police came along at the point where you were trying some keys in random car doors, you could have a job explaining what you're doing.  I'd be fairly wary of doing that.

Dropping if off at a local police station, or nearby substantial building (eg Supermarket, Hospital etc) if that seemed a very likely bet seems the best option.

If it's a case as outlined in the OP, it's a bit harder.  If there really was no obvious place nearby (local shop etc), then popping in a postbox (as suggested above) seems like an idea, at least the local postman is likely to know the nearest police station.
Actually, it is rocket science.
 

fuzzy

Re: What would you do if you found a lost key?
« Reply #13 on: 21 June, 2010, 05:50:33 pm »
Police Station- but, the action on recieveing found unidentifiable property like keys, spectacles etc. is to put them in a "Found Property" bin/ bag/ box/ tray for a month. If someone comes in sayingt hey lost their keys a couple of days ago they get a look at all the keys recently handed in. If it is in there- Bingo.

Martin

Re: What would you do if you found a lost key?
« Reply #14 on: 21 June, 2010, 05:58:18 pm »
if it was an Alfa Romeo remote locking key; take the blade out sell it on ebay and buy a shiny new bike (or 2) :demon:

actually if it is from a car; sending it back to the manufacturer to have it decoded would probably identify the owner

rr

Re: What would you do if you found a lost key?
« Reply #15 on: 21 June, 2010, 07:31:17 pm »
Unless the keyring has a Tesco Clubcard attached - in which case, take it to a Tescos.  They offer to try and get it back to the owner.

This works I once got my keys back via Tescos, unfortunately as I finished changing the locks.

Cudzoziemiec

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Re: What would you do if you found a lost key?
« Reply #16 on: 23 June, 2010, 03:37:51 pm »
There is an ironic postscript to this story. Yesterday afternoon I was up on Bristol Downs with my son. When we got back home I realised the front door key had dropped out of my pocket somewhere. But fortunately at that very moment my Dad - who we're staying with atm till Friday - turned up. Lost and found.
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noisycrank

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Re: What would you do if you found a lost key?
« Reply #17 on: 25 June, 2010, 07:51:12 pm »
In the UK if you find something with an identifier on it (e.g. keys with a Clubcard keyfob, work pass, cheque book etc) you can stick it in the nearest postbox. Royal Mail has a "returning lost things" department at each main sorting office whose job it is to return such items to their owners if possible.


I love that - is it true or is it one of those "the reading room of the british library is is famous for its echo" things
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Biggsy

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Re: What would you do if you found a lost key?
« Reply #18 on: 25 June, 2010, 08:11:10 pm »
In the UK if you find something with an identifier on it (e.g. keys with a Clubcard keyfob, work pass, cheque book etc) you can stick it in the nearest postbox. Royal Mail has a "returning lost things" department at each main sorting office whose job it is to return such items to their owners if possible.


I love that - is it true or is it one of those "the reading room of the british library is is famous for its echo" things

I wouldn't have much faith in them even if there is such a department - since the RM too often even fails to deliver things clearly marked with a correct address.
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FifeingEejit

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Re: What would you do if you found a lost key?
« Reply #19 on: 04 October, 2021, 04:53:19 pm »
Well this place turned up 5th in my search...

I found some keys in the road while out cycling the other day.
I've shoved a bit of paper on the appropriate road sign and if no one claims them soon then I'll shove them in an envelope marked Fife Polis, possibly with a stamp or 4, possibly not.

They're not rusty, nor is the leather fob damaged but the ring looks like it's been run over a few times, so I'm not sure if I should double check they aren't the missing garage keys the previous owner of my house failed to provide me. (But I wasn't caring enough to tell my solicitor to sort it as I was going to change them all anyway and had a means to get it)

Clare

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Re: What would you do if you found a lost key?
« Reply #20 on: 04 October, 2021, 06:06:35 pm »
I'm glad you have just revived this thread as I never replied to the questions about my post.

In the UK if you find something with an identifier on it (e.g. keys with a Clubcard keyfob, work pass, cheque book etc) you can stick it in the nearest postbox. Royal Mail has a "returning lost things" department at each main sorting office whose job it is to return such items to their owners if possible.


I love that - is it true or is it one of those "the reading room of the british library is is famous for its echo" things
I wouldn't have much faith in them even if there is such a department - since the RM too often even fails to deliver things clearly marked with a correct address.

The person who told me that worked in the sorting office of Portsmouth main post office so I assume that they were telling the truth. No idea if it is still the case.

Cudzoziemiec

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Re: What would you do if you found a lost key?
« Reply #21 on: 04 October, 2021, 06:17:42 pm »
I have not found any lost keys in the last eleven years. I expect Blodwyn Pig has them all.
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Re: What would you do if you found a lost key?
« Reply #22 on: 04 October, 2021, 06:23:01 pm »
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Re: What would you do if you found a lost key?
« Reply #23 on: 04 October, 2021, 07:42:57 pm »
Facebook page for the local community where the keys were found or lost to highlight they've  been found then hand them in to local shop, garage, pub etc. I lost my large bunch of bike keys ( keys for 4 bike locks, 2 electric bike battery locks, back gate and back door house keys) as I had left my rack pack unzippedafter a lunch stop. I only realised I had lost the keys when I got home, although I had spotted the bag unzipped at a wee stop on the way home. So knowing the 4 miles over which the bag was unzipped I put the folder in the car, parked at one end and slowly rode and re rode the stretch eyes glued to the rad and verge and asking in every cafe, shop, coffee Trailer along the route. With no success I glumly made my way home. So my wife then posted a message on the FB groups for the communities at either end of the 4 miles.  Within minutes she received a reply to say a bunch of keys had been found near the homeward end of the 4 miles and handed in to the Ones top shop in the village which wasn't  on the route as the cycle route dodged around the back of the main road so I hadn't  seen or remembered the shop to ask in myself. Back in the car and hey presto there were my keys behind the counter.  Keys can be replaced (at a cost) but my grandfather's  LMS whistle now an antique would be much harder.

FifeingEejit

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Re: What would you do if you found a lost key?
« Reply #24 on: 04 October, 2021, 09:44:39 pm »
Farcebook has so far drawn a blank, I even got my cousin to post on a group I'm not welcome on due to type of "equipment".
One of the local shops is also the post office so may as well see if they'll take them, the other is a petril station.
The problem is I wont get to either until Thursday by which time it's a week, long enough for a locksmith to have been called out and sorted the problem at the cost of insurance excess.