Sunderland student reunited with prized artwork after leaving it aboard Metro train

A University of Sunderland art student feared he had lost months of work after he left his design portfolio on board a Metro train.

Tuesday, 14th January 2020, 1:41 pm
Updated Tuesday, 14th January 2020, 7:02 pm
Sunderland University Illustration and Design student David Byrne with some of the work he left on the Metro. Picture by David Wood

David Byrne was just days away from handing in his final year project when he realised his prized work had gone missing.

But thanks to vigilant Metro staff, the 31-year-old was reunited with just hours before the deadline.

The third year Illustration and Design student had spent more than six weeks pulling together one of his final projects which was due to be handed on Friday, January 10.

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David Byrne's designs. Picture by David Wood

On the Monday of that week he had been travelling home, getting on the Metro at University station in Sunderland at around 7pm, and disembarking at Central Station in Newcastle.

But it was not until David got back to his house that he realised he no longer had his portfolio of work.

David said: “At first I wasn’t sure where I’d left it, so I just started ringing everywhere. I called Nexus and left my details with them.

“I didn’t hear anything the next day and was starting to think I might have to start everything again from scratch.”

Picture by David Wood.

But the following day, David, who lives in Elswick in Newcastle but is originally from Sunderland, received the news that Metro staff had found his portfolio.

The student said: “When I got the call from Nexus saying they had found my work, I was so relieved. I couldn’t believe it.

“I went and picked it up from South Gosforth depot. I’m so grateful to the Metro team, they were amazing.”

Once David graduates in the summer, he is planning a career in design and illustration, possibly going freelance.

A spokesperson for Metro operator Nexus said: “We’re delighted that David has been re-united with his portfolio. It was found on a train by a member of staff and was handed into our lost property office. We then rang him back and he was able to come and collect it. He was very relieved.

“The Tyne and Wear Metro gets thousands of items of lost property each year and we always to our absolute best to get those items back to their rightful owners.”