The Apollo Project
Liberal Ideas for the 21st Century
Wednesday, February 22, 2006
Probably not the UK's biggest robbery
by Alex Sweet

A pedant writes: today's robbery has been widely referred to in the media (e.g. tomorrow's front pages) as the UK's biggest ever robbery. It is thought that around £40m may have been taken.

It ought to go without saying that to assess what is the largest robbery ever in Britain, you need to adjust the previous amounts stolen for inflation. Here is a ready reckoner, applying the UKCompare tool at Economic History to the amounts given at the BBC's roll call of past hauls.

There are two major contenders in recent history (and doubtless some others looking further back).

1963: the Great Train Robbery made off with £2.6m worth of swag, which would be some £37m in 2006 on a retail price basis, adding an additional 4% for the years since 2004.

1983: the Brinks-Mat robbery netted £26m. This translates to £61m in 2006 on the same basis.

If correct, the £40m thought to be stolen today would therefore be far short of the most valuable UK robbery.
posted by Apollo Project @ 11:22 pm  
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