An angry customer has criticised Ikea after it could not provide CCTV of her bike being stolen outside the store – despite the furniture giant encouraging customers to cycle to what it calls its “most sustainable” store.
Dominika Hopper, from Charlton, discovered that surveillance cameras did not cover all the store’s bike racks after her bike was taken while she was shopping last month.
When police asked Dominika and her husband, Stuart, if they could ask Ikea to send it CCTV footage, the store refused, demanding the police contact it directly. When Ikea finally did send the footage to police, it transpired that the cameras did not cover all the bike park.
The couple say staff at the store were rude to them and that the company has not responded to a complaint about the issue. The theft took place betwen 4pm and 5pm on Wednesday 8 May.
Dominika told 853: “I took my daughter in the bike trailer to visit the cafe and buy some kitchen utensils. I locked my bike at the side of the building and detached bike trailer which I took into the store with me.
“I was in the store for just over an hour and returned with the bike trailer to find the bike was gone. I returned home and told my husband who told me we must call the police. He reported the bike stolen and the police told us to go to the store and ask if there was CCTV covering the area. If there was we should ask them to send the footage to an address they gave him.
“We went to the store to tell them about the incident and asked if there was CCTV. They told us there was. We waited a while, and assumed they were checking footage. After 15 minutes they replied to say that there were no bikes parked at the timeframe stated.
“I insisted my bike was there, and that others were parked there too. I asked Ikea to forward the footage to the Met police email address I provided, to which they refused. They said that I would have to email customer services and the police would have to request it. It was quite unsatisfactory that I would have to take this circuitous route to get this done. The attitude of who I’m assuming was the head of customer services was very poor and didn’t appear to be all that concerned about the crime that took place on their property.”
Stuart added: “The police called me to say that they checked a wider timespan with no luck, and that the CCTV didn’t cover all of the bike park, which would explain why it wasn’t picked up. What’s the point of providing what is a very nice bicycle parking area if it is not secure? The area on the side of the building is quite isolated and we do not feel safe parking our bikes there any longer. Nor should anyone.”
Ikea is meant to promote sustainable travel to its store under the terms of its planning consent. Improvements to make it easier to walk and cycle to the store have still not been finished, four months after the store opening, despite Greenwch Council promising they would be in place by spring.
The store’s manager, Helen Ayling, told 853: “We are constantly reviewing our procedures to improve safety and security across the entire store site, including our bicycle facilities. If a customer believes that an item of theirs has been stolen whilst visiting our store, we advise them to report it to ourselves and the local Police who will then request to see CCTV on their behalf. We cannot pass CCTV footage onto the customer directly due to data protection.”
Stuart Hopper responded: “I didn’t ask them to give me the footage, but to send it to the police email address I was providing to them. They haven’t responded to me. Seems like they just want to ignore it. I find it is most upsetting that they don’t respond to me directly. Especially as I have been a good customer of theirs for many years.”
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