Wednesday, 26 June 2019
Friday, 31 December 2015
First with the news
Updated 4 January 2016

Britwell Kidnap - Children Safe

6 and 10 year olds taken from Hemming Way home
Police now say "no offence took place"

Report and photographs: Paul Janik
Anonymous Hemming Way - Slough Council removed the street name sign 3 years ago.

Thames Valley Police have launched an investigation into claims two young children were kidnapped this morning and driven away in a white van. Minutes later the children ran home unhurt.

The incident occurred this morning between 07:00 and 07:30 when 3 men, in dark clothes with their faces concealed, entered a house in Hemming Way, at the top end of Long Readings Lane, in the north-west of Slough.

Police have neither revealed a description of the men nor whether the incident is domestic family related or for a ransom.

The men told two boys, aged 6 and 10, to get into a white van parked nearby. Police say there was no violence and the other people in the house were not disturbed.

The van, possibly a Ford Transit, drove out of Hemming Way, straight across Long Readings, and into Upper Leas Road where, police say, the children "left the van" and ran home.

Neither child was physically hurt in the kidnapping.

The investigation is being lead by Det Insp Nicola Hurdley based at Maidenhead. Mrs Hurdley said:

Detectives are currently in the early stages of working to establish the circumstances and motive of this incident. Officers are currently patrolling in the area and anyone who has any concerns can approach officers and speak to them.

I would appeal to anyone who has any information about this incident or saw anyone acting suspiciously in the area at around the time of the incident to speak to police. Information which may appear insignificant to you may assist the investigation.

Anyone who knows anything or can help is asked to ring the police on 101 or 01865-84 11 48 quoting 'URN 187 of 31/12'

Police have put on You Tube a 17 second video extract recorded by a CCTV camera on a house on the south side of Upper Lees Road.

The poor quality video shows two people. One a youngish child. The other either an older and taller child or an adult. The older person is wearing a whitish or light-coloured long coat.

Police are hoping these two people, who were walking of the south side (left side) of Upper Lees Road, towards Doddsfield, possibly between 07:20 and 07:25 this morning (Thursday 31 December) may have seen something, perhaps without realising the significance. Detectives are anxious for these people, or their parents, to call them on 101 because they may have vital information that can help solve the kidnap investigation.

Anything you say to the police will be treated in total confidence and your personal details will not be disclosed.

Police inspector Mrs Hurdley added:

I would also reiterate my appeal to anyone else with any information, no matter how insignificant, to also come forward so we can bring the perpetrators to justice.

2.1/2 days after the kidnapping, police continue to guard the Somali children's home whilst a constant flow of Somali-speaking support workers arrive to re-assure the shocked and frightened family.

Update : 4 January 2016

This evening at 17:40, police released this statement from detective sergeant Jonathan Groenen:

Following a thorough police investigation, it has been established that no offence took place.

I would like to pass on my thanks to those in the community for their patience while officers investigated in the area.

Thames Valley Police takes all reports of this nature seriously and officers will always carry out enquiries to establish the circumstances.