I noticed a silver hatch-back car, with a short odd-looking trailer, pull up. The driver got out, lifted the hatch, put a brick behind a wheel of the trailer, and then went over to a hydrant cover and removed it. Then, from a selection of stand-pipes in the back of the car, he took one out and screwed it quickly into the hydrant. The stand-pipe had a hose already attached, and a tap at the top. He then stuck the hose into the trailer and turned on the tap. I rang 999 and expected to be told to ring 101, but they did put me through to the police national line. I told them what was happening, they asked where it was, and the reg number of the car. But the chap was so quick, that I could see that he was already turning off the tap. Before my call ended, he was already unscrewing the stand-pipe, so they said that they would notify police cars in the area to look out for the car. I knew that the regional water authority were doing some work about half a mile away, so I went to them and told them what had happened. They said that they knew nothing about it, and since it was an unmarked car, it was probably theft. Just then my phone rang. It was the police in my area, thanking me for the call, but they said that it was not something they would get involved in, and that they would pass the info over to the water authority. I said that I was talking to a couple of chaps from the water authority who agreed with me that it sounded like theft, but the person on the phone still said that they would pass it over to the water authority. The chaps told me that this was probably not unusual, as builders and "caravan people" (not their words) were always stealing water. I always wondered where "caravan people" got their water from. Now I know, and since the police aren't interested, maybe we should all put stand-pipes in the road and just help ourselves.