Russ travelled to Slough on the 18th April 2002 for Antony & Rachel's wedding for what was supposed to be a quiet weekend for the Club's Press Officer, reporting on the events. After the wedding on Friday and the blessing on Saturday passed without any serious incidents, Russ was partaking of a small beer on the bar of the Royal Suite in the Copthorne Hotel, Slough to toast the happy couple. Reports are hazy as to the time but it was believed to be around 1am that Russ was discovered to be missing. In a daring raid Russ had been snatched away by a local publican and we believe was to be held for ransom. The Club Officers were distraught over the gnomenapping and immediately launched an investigation into who, when and how Russ had come to be taken. The secretary of the club was charged with dereliction of duty as designated Keeper of the Gnome for the evening. The secretary was released on unconditional club bail until sentence is announced later in the year.
Monday morning, local sympathisers of the Club carried out a daring raid at
a local drinking establishment and caught the publican red handed with Russ.
After careful negotiations were successfully concluded Russ was handed over
to Paula, who took him into care until his safe return to the Keeper of the
Gnome could be arranged. Russ caused quite a stir on his arrival at Paula and
Rachel's workplace and spent a week of notoriety in the offices, before Rachel
left for her honeymoon with Antony.
then proceeded to travel the country with Paula, sending regular reports to
Micky via e-mail and postcards from the places he visited, including a tour
of London, Berkshire and Derbyshire. Russ returned to his home recently and
has resumed his duties as Press Officer, relaxed and refreshed after his ordeal.
Russ would like to thank his hosts for the last few weeks, in particular Paula
for her kindness since he was gnomenapped.
Pictures of Russ' visit to the Commonwealth Games here.