Jim Jarmy in garden

Article by Piers Meyler: An MBE recipient who dedicated his life to famous gardens in Brentwood is warning readers to be on the lookout, after a gang of bogus tree surgeons stole £600 from his house.

Jim Jarmy, 89, wanted a garden hedge trimmed at his home in Billericay and being mindful of his age, called a number advertising garden work on a card pushed through his letterbox.

The former agriculturist retired as Warley Place's tree surgeon two-years-ago and has only recently stopped going up ladders to trim trees and hedges at his house in Felsted Road.

Mr Jarmy, who met the Queen when he was awarded an MBE for services to conservation and community in 2014, realised money had been stolen after seeing his jacket lying on the floor. But the gang fled before his son could confront them. The army veteran, who met Gandhi while serving with the British Army in India between 1945 and 1948, explained how the trio arrived at 3.30pm on Friday in a blue Land Rover Discovery.

Jim Jarmy wants to warn people about the scam.

[quote width="auto" align="none" border="#0066cc" color="#0066cc" title="Quoted by Mr Jarmy"]I was on my knees doing some weeding when they asked for a cup of tea. One of them followed me in and went upstairs and found my coat with £600 in it. It was my pension, which I should have put it in the bank, but it was in my coat. I get the pension every two weeks and there was four weeks' of money in there. I saw the coat on the floor and phoned my son Paul, who lives nearby, and said he'd better come. As he arrived they ran out of the back and drove off.[/quote]

He received an MBE for his work at Warley Place. Mr Jarmy said he had paid the group £300 for the original job, which was carried out "awfully."

He said the men even threw some of the waste from the hedge cutting behind his greenhouse.

His son Paul Monk, 65, added:

[quote width="auto" align="none" border="#0066cc" color="#0066cc" title="Quoted by Paul Monk"]It makes me angry that they prey on old people. This is the worst case that I have heard of. I wouldn't trust any of these leaflets that get pushed through doors.[/quote]

Jim worked at Warley Place for 40 years

[quote width="auto" align="none" border="#0066cc" color="#0066cc" title="Quoted by Mr Jarmy"]I'm very angry but I just want people to be made aware of this and make sure they do not allow these people into their homes. Ignore them.[/quote]

Essex Police officers are investing.

[quote width="auto" align="none" border="#0066cc" color="#0066cc" title="Quoted by Essex Police spokesperson"]One of the men was white, with tanned skin, 5ft 6ins tall and was stocky with black, curly hair and aged in his 40s. Another was aged in his 20s, was 5ft 7ins tall and was wearing a light grey top. The third man stayed in their vehicle which was a blue Land Rover type and was wearing an orange fluorescent jacket.[/quote]

Anybody with any information is asked to contact Essex Police on 101.

Read original article by Pier Meyler, Brentwood Gazette

More local news