ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) –  Often in Albuquerque, people stop in town for the night and have their trailers stolen. The latest victim claimed he was the former master saddler for the late Queen of England; his trailer contained many of the tools he used while serving her. Now, they’re gone.

Richard Castelow, originally from England, is a master saddler.

“I make saddles and bridals and items in leather for a horse,” he said. He said he had made saddles for the late Queen Elizabeth II.

“I served 22 years as a soldier, and then I was invited to, over the appointment, of master saddler to the Queen of England,” said Castelow.

He’s now living in the U.S., and he is on his way to a horse show in California. His stop in Albuquerque quickly turned the trip around when he said thieves stole his trailer in the Home2 hotel parking lot off University. The trailer had all of his saddle-making tools inside.

“My tools are over 100 years old, and I’ve used them for 40 years, and they were passed down to me by various master saddlers over the years,” he said, “I’ve got pricking irons; they were stamped 1840.”

He said the tools are irreplaceable. “These are not tools you get from Home Depot or Lowe’s.
You know, these are tools precious, and looked after, and loved, if you can love a tool,” said Castelow, “My girlfriend burst into tears, and I’m like no, this just can’t happen, but, it did.”

It does, often. In recent weeks, Albuquerque has seen a trailer stolen on the west side, a food truck trailer stolen, and of course, the trailer that housed the Baby Bumblebee special shape balloon stolen during Balloon Fiesta.


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“The majority of people you meet are good people and really pleased to meet you, and see you. It’s just the bad, you know the bad penny I suppose, we get them all over the world,” said Castelow. He said he would offer a reward just to have his tools again.

“I can’t replace them, whatever tools I get nowadays are not going to be like them,” he said.

With his tools stolen, Castelow said there is no use continuing on to the horse show in California. The Home2 hotel said they caught the trailer theft on security camera and have passed that footage on to police. If anyone sees a 2019 grey trailer that says ‘Tritan’ on it, they are encouraged to call Albuquerque Police.