Roker Park sign, a King Charles Spaniel and a life-size cut-out of Jill Scott – the weird and wonderful things left in Sunderland’s Travelodge hotels

What do a King Charles Spaniel, a lucky coin and a life-size cut-out of I’m a Celeb’s Queen of the Jungle Jill Scott MBE have in common?

Sunderland Central Travelodge in Low Row
Sunderland Central Travelodge in Low Row

Well, along with a 5ft vintage ‘Roker Park’ sign, a fantasy dragon kite and a large light-up lighthouse, they are all items left behind by forgetful guests at Sunderland’s Travelodge hotels last year.

The budget chain has three venues on Wearside – one in Low Row and one on each side of the A1M at Washington services.

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‘We do get a range of interesting items left behind’

The lucky George V crown, vintage sign, dragon kite and Jill Scott cut-out were all left behind at the city centre Travelodge, while Magic the King Charles Spaniel and the lighthouse were abandoned at the southbound and northbound A1M hotels respectively.

Travelodge spokeswoman Shakila Ahmed said: “With nearly 19million customers annually staying at our 580 UK Travelodge hotels, including our three hotels in Sunderland, for thousands of different reasons, we do get a range of interesting items left behind.

“Interestingly the 2022 lost and found audit also revealed that we are a nation striving for a healthy lifestyle as we have seen a significant rise in smart watches being left behind in our hotels during the last 12 months.

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“When it comes to why so many of our customers forget their treasured items, it’s basically due to us all being time poor, juggling multiple tasks and being in a hurry to get from A to B.

"In the rush, valuable possessions are easily forgotten.”

Unsurprisingly, given the death of Queen Elizabeth, last year saw a high volume of royal and patriotic memorabilia being left behind at Travelodges, with one forgetful guest having to make a return journey from Jersey to the Luton Airport hotel to collect her prized album documenting the life of Her Majesty from princess to Queen which had been started by her grandmother in 1947 and passed down the generations.

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Oil painting

Another customer at Windsor Travelodge went to the trouble of booking an extra room to store his oil painting of Her Majesty only to forget to take it with him, while the housekeeping team at the Kings Cross Travelodge found a replica of the state imperial crown sat on a cushion in the middle of the bed. The customer, a French jeweller, was in such a rush to catch his Eurostar train to Paris that he forgot his crown.

Other items one might reasonably have expected to be somewhat harder to forget included a five-tier Liverpool Football Club wedding cake, left behind by the best man; a lucky Chinese wedding envelope containing 10,000 Yuan, and a pair of Segways, decorated in roses, and intended to be used by a happy couple to enter their wedding reception.

All items which have not been claimed within three months are donated to the British Heart Foundation, Travelodge’s nominated charity partner.

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Top ten

The top ten items most frequently left behind in Travelodge hotels during 2022:

Chargers for mobile phones and electronic devices

Mobile phones, tablets and Kindles

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Smart watches

Business papers / notepads / presentations

Books

Teddy bears

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Toiletry bags with contents

Jewellery

Clothing

Toys

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Gifts/presents