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Thread: Central London - Am I Being Daft?

  1. #1
    Master
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    Central London - Am I Being Daft?

    I'm going to London tomorrow for the day - bit of window shopping in the West end in the morning, then into the City for a retirement do.
    I want to wear my Sub but there's a voice saying "You're asking for trouble, wear the Monaco or the FXD or something else" .
    There's another voice saying "Don't be silly, a Sub looks like any other dive watch. Besides, you're 6'4", 20 stone & bad tempered,, just be sensible about where you go, how you look & what you do & you'll be fine ".
    What is the consensus, apart from telling a grown up that I hear voices...

  2. #2
    No, not being daft at all. I usually spend a couple of days a week in Central London, Iíve seen a couple of muggings and now wear a Citizen and keep my mobile phone in my pocket, itís best not to tempt the animalsÖ

  3. #3
    Journeyman Ikincooper's Avatar
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    I went to AP House London Friday last week and decided to go watchless and it allowed me to fully relax when walking around London in a T-shirt.


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  4. #4
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    Personal choice I guess.

    My own take is anything on a strap is probably under the radar enough.

    Last visit I wore an Explorer on a black leather strap.

  5. #5
    Master Halitosis's Avatar
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    For a day in the streets of London, I'd only wear the Submariner under long sleeves. Why cause worry? YMMV

  6. #6
    Grand Master Seamaster73's Avatar
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    The days of me wearing my Sub in Londonistan are over.

  7. #7
    Grand Master wileeeeeey's Avatar
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    Majority of the issue is if you flaunt it or have too much to drink and look vulnerable. Going somewhere like Sexy Fish increases the odds.

    I wear it all but nothing overtly loud in short sleeved summer and not on a night out. One less thing to worry about.

  8. #8
    Grand Master Sinnlover's Avatar
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    I would not worry as long as you keep your wits about you and are sensible. The risk is no more than walking about other large cityís in the UK or parts of Europe.
    You hear the headlines but the many more people just go about their daily lives wearing what ever watch they want.

  9. #9
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    Funnily enough Iím doing exactly the same thing tomorrow. Red eye to Heathrow in the morning and a mooch around Bond Street etc and meeting up with friends near Leadenhall market in the afternoon. I too was wondering what watch to take. I think being aware of your surroundings is key.


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  10. #10
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    This is my thinking, all the precautions in the world may not be proof against being in the wrong place at the wrong time & meeting the wrong person.
    I can't function without a watch so I think I'll go with something low key on a strap - Tuna, 2254 on a GGB strap, G-Shock...

  11. #11
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    The fact you are even asking the question says it all. I have no issues wearing my omega, IWC or zenith but wouldnít wear my Tudor just because itís recognisable.

    Wear something you are comfortable to wear that is not a watch the thieves are targeting.

  12. #12
    couple of weeks ago a friend visiting me had her phone snatched out of her hand as she cycled around mayfair. sub is a fairly obvious target, especially in t shirt weather. as others say, why take the risk.

  13. #13
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    Definitely leaving the Sub behind. Leaning towards the Tuna or FXD on a plain black rubber strap.
    Sadly this is the world we live in now, having to rank our "nice things" & pick one that's not the one we like best, rather it's the one we think will attract least attention.

  14. #14
    I donít think you are being daft at all. Iím no shrinking violet when it comes to tackling a bounder with criminal intentions but Iíd think carefully about what to wear and how to conduct myself and would avoid getting too drunk that I couldnít be aware of my surroundings. I reckon your Tudor or Tag would be equally attractive if someone got close enough so donít be that out of it that you donít notice someone paying too much attention to your wrist.

  15. #15
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    Iím going to go against the majority and say wear what you want, just keep your wits about you -especially if itís insured.

    I wear my Rolex in London all the time, nights out everything. I think youíve got to be pretty unlucky for something to happen.

    Caveat being if youíre not comfortable wearing it, then donít. Why ruin your day out with constant worry and second guessing!

    Have a good trip!

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ghost Chilli View Post
    Iím going to go against the majority and say wear what you want, just keep your wits about you -especially if itís insured.

    I wear my Rolex in London all the time, nights out everything. I think youíve got to be pretty unlucky for something to happen.

    Caveat being if youíre not comfortable wearing it, then donít. Why ruin your day out with constant worry and second guessing!

    Have a good trip!
    Thanks, my old boss is retiring so it's going to be a few scoops near Custom House. The Sub is insured but by a fluke has a serial number that's significant to me so I don't want to lose it.
    As mentioned upthread, it's sad how we normalise having to make decisions like this.
    I think I'm going to make myself completely mugger proof & dig out one of my old Boctoks...

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Speedy2254 View Post
    Thanks, my old boss is retiring so it's going to be a few scoops near Custom House. The Sub is insured but by a fluke has a serial number that's significant to me so I don't want to lose it.
    As mentioned upthread, it's sad how we normalise having to make decisions like this.
    I think I'm going to make myself completely mugger proof & dig out one of my old Boctoks...
    Should be a good night.

    Itís nice when that happens, my GMT has my birth year in the serial number.

    If I have any doubt or donít think an expensive watch is appropriate (usually abroad ) I just stick it on a NATO and that seems to work.

  18. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by Sinnlover View Post
    I would not worry as long as you keep your wits about you and are sensible. The risk is no more than walking about other large cityís in the UK or parts of Europe.
    You hear the headlines but the many more people just go about their daily lives wearing what ever watch they want.
    Honestly I think you're wrong here. London has a pretty serious problem with watch theft. The Met Police launched their own campaign, and you only have to Google 'watch theft in London' to see it's headline news, and has been a growing trend.

    Try the same search with 'watch theft in Leeds' or Edinburgh and you'll see the risks are significantly higher in London than any other UK city.

    Personally long sleeves covering a Rolex, or leave it at home.

  19. #19
    Grand Master ryanb741's Avatar
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    Total overreaction. I live in London and wear my luxury watches out every day and it's been weeks since I was last mugged.

  20. #20
    It's only my all Rose Gold watches that I won't wear in London.....anything Steel or White Gold (or on Oysterflex) and I'm not too concerned but need to have your wits about you.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Speedy2254 View Post
    I'm going to London tomorrow for the day - bit of window shopping in the West end in the morning, then into the City for a retirement do.
    I want to wear my Sub but there's a voice saying "You're asking for trouble, wear the Monaco or the FXD or something else" .
    There's another voice saying "Don't be silly, a Sub looks like any other dive watch. Besides, you're 6'4", 20 stone & bad tempered,, just be sensible about where you go, how you look & what you do & you'll be fine ".
    What is the consensus, apart from telling a grown up that I hear voices...
    Sad to say because I used to wear my GMT in the West End quite often on a Saturday, but I wouldn't now. I wouldn't wear a Monaco or an FXD either. I probably wouldn't even wear an homage to something valuable-looking.

  22. #22
    If thereís doubt, then thereís no doubt.

    I have a London trip and it will be Seiko SKX007 or the Ďbasicí Apple Watch. (Or CWC Fatboy!).

    Even with insurance, being careful etc, I ask myself if itís worth the worry and the hassle of sorting things out if it went wrong. Plus travelling with my family, itís not worth having that level of risk.

    Safe travels!

  23. #23
    Grand Master Sinnlover's Avatar
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    Central London - Am I Being Daft?

    Quote Originally Posted by chrisparker View Post
    Honestly I think you're wrong here. London has a pretty serious problem with watch theft. The Met Police launched their own campaign, and you only have to Google 'watch theft in London' to see it's headline news, and has been a growing trend.

    Try the same search with 'watch theft in Leeds' or Edinburgh and you'll see the risks are significantly higher in London than any other UK city.

    Personally long sleeves covering a Rolex, or leave it at home.
    Yes you are correct I am totally wrong
    I only live in London, work in London, go out in London every day.
    I live in constant fear and have not left the house for months unless I am wearing rags

  24. #24
    Grand Master wileeeeeey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sinnlover View Post
    Yes you are correct I am totally wrong
    I only live in London, work in London, go out in London every day.
    I live in constant fear and have not left the house for months unless I am wearing rags
    Have a mate from Ayr in Scotland who got married in the highlands to an American girl. Half her invite list refused to come because they were scared of Muslim terrorists in Europe. Some genuinely believed Christianís werenít allowed into London. Nuts.

    I wear it all in london just not on nights out.

  25. #25
    I wouldn't give it a second thought, London isn't quite as bad as made out on here...Just like a washing up won't jeopardise the water resistance of your 200m divers watch despite what some would have you believe.

  26. #26
    Grand Master Sinnlover's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wileeeeeey View Post
    Have a mate from Ayr in Scotland who got married in the highlands to an American girl. Half her invite list refused to come because they were scared of Muslim terrorists in Europe. Some genuinely believed Christian’s weren’t allowed into London. Nuts.

    I wear it all in london just not on nights out.
    This is my approach.
    That is crazy but I am not surprised, I do think London gets all the wrong press, I think it is a safe city and have been to a lot worse places in Europe. Some parts of Athens or most of Barcelona or all of Paris for example.

    If going out with the lads, I don’t wear anything expensive, not because I might get robbed but because I am likely to damage / lose the thing (I have before), if going to dinner I might wear something nice but I am not going to the sorts of places that might be a bit rough, I don’t get tanked up and keep my wits about me, just the same as I would in Paris, Berlin, Athens or Europes arm pit - Barcelona. Not because of my watch but because the Mrs is with me.
    If I am am going somewhere rough I adjust my dress to suit.

    It’s really not that bad here, my driver drops me off where I want to go and I don’t have to look at the poor because of the tinted windows on the Bentley :-p.

  27. #27
    Grand Master MartynJC (UK)'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ryanb741 View Post
    Total overreaction. I live in London and wear my luxury watches out every day and it's been weeks since I was last mugged.
    That made me chortle!

    OP: It is sad days but I would suggest wearing a Casio or Citizen - just not worth the mental anguish wearing a Sub in town - if out for the evening for some shandies.

    Daytime / Lunchtimes - no problems - I used to wear my Patek on the underground up to the office - in fact all my watches got worn - else why have them.
    Last edited by MartynJC (UK); 16th August 2023 at 15:53.
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  28. #28
    At first I thought I opened rolexforums by mistake.

    I think there are several if not even tens of thousands man and woman with Rolex on their wrists in London every day. How many are Rolex watches are reported stolen? One per day?

    Just be aware of your surroundings and you'll be OK.

  29. #29
    Quote Originally Posted by Sinnlover View Post
    Yes you are correct I am totally wrong
    I only live in London, work in London, go out in London every day.
    I live in constant fear and have not left the house for months unless I am wearing rags
    I also live, work and go out and about London every day. I do not live in constant fear but if you are in the wrong place at the wrong time then anything is possible. The more affluent the area the higher the risk as no point targeting people in deprived areas!

    OP, if you want an enjoyable and stress free visit and plan to wear short sleeves then personally I would not wear a sub.

  30. #30
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    I work in Mayfair and wouldn't wear a Rolex in central London.
    Other brands that are less identifiable - yes, and preferably cheap and uninteresting to magpies.

    Im sure theres a level of one upmanship over who's brave and savvy enough to wear anything they like without being mugged, but once youve seen mopeds and machetes/axes come crashing through a window you sack that off in favour of not painting a target on yourself.

    Unless you've got the reflexes of Mr Miyagi then youre not going to react in time to a moped hitting the pavement just before it hits you.

  31. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by verv View Post
    I work in Mayfair and wouldn't wear a Rolex in central London.
    Other brands that are less identifiable - yes, and preferably cheap and uninteresting to magpies.

    Im sure theres a level of one upmanship over who's brave and savvy enough to wear anything they like without being mugged, but once youve seen mopeds and machetes/axes come crashing through a window you sack that off in favour of not painting a target on yourself.

    Unless you've got the reflexes of Mr Miyagi then youre not going to react in time to a moped hitting the pavement just before it hits you.
    ^^^ Thats certainly food for thought. I think Iím always careful when wearing my watches when I come to London, but maybe thatís foolish thinking.

    Weird though as where I live I never give it a second thought, but albeit a lot less, crime is still everywhere.

  32. #32
    Master
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    Thanks all for the replies, definitely food for thought. I've had a rummage in the watch box & it's going to be a Seiko on a black rubber plain strap.
    No sense in risking me or the Sub especially after a glass or two of dizzyade...

  33. #33
    Journeyman Ikincooper's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Speedy2254 View Post
    Thanks all for the replies, definitely food for thought. I've had a rummage in the watch box & it's going to be a Seiko on a black rubber plain strap.
    No sense in risking me or the Sub especially after a glass or two of dizzyade...
    Sounds like youíre making the right decision


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  34. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ikincooper View Post
    Sounds like youíre making the right decision


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    I think so, it'd be crazy to let vanity + "it'll never happen to me " cost me my favourite watch.
    It occurred to me this afternoon that there's a G-Shock store in Carnaby Street, might be worth checking out the range & getting one for cases like this...

  35. #35
    Quote Originally Posted by Speedy2254 View Post
    I think so, it'd be crazy to let vanity + "it'll never happen to me " cost me my favourite watch.
    It occurred to me this afternoon that there's a G-Shock store in Carnaby Street, might be worth checking out the range & getting one for cases like this...
    Swatch now have most of the Moonswatch models available and in stock daily as well if you fancy one!

  36. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by boring_sandwich View Post
    Swatch now have most of the Moonswatch models available and in stock daily as well if you fancy one!
    That's a thought, might check it out. Thanks for the tip.

  37. #37
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    Thoughts and prayers etc.

  38. #38
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    I think Verv nailed it here unless you're one of the people who considers the risks as minimal which is also fair enough.

    I live in a relatively low crime area but I'm neither 20 stone or MMA trained and prefer being low profile generally hence my Damasko being the watch most worn day to day.

  39. #39
    I live in London and now wear an Apple WatchÖ

  40. #40
    Firstly, no you are not being daft.
    When we went to London earlier this year I wore my Garmin.
    Come to that, I no longer have any high profile pieces, mainly due to the risk and my increasing years.
    When I live in a remote area, surrounded by fields etc, I may reconsider!!

  41. #41
    I wear expensive watches on my wrist day in day out in London - with my sleeves rolled up.

    There are thousands of people wearing expensive watches everywhere and I've never seen anybody mugged.

    FYI, I have been mugged, but in Argentina. In London, the risk is negligible. Why own something you're not going to wear?

  42. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by guinea View Post
    I wear expensive watches on my wrist day in day out in London - with my sleeves rolled up.

    There are thousands of people wearing expensive watches everywhere and I've never seen anybody mugged.

    FYI, I have been mugged, but in Argentina. In London, the risk is negligible. Why own something you're not going to wear?
    I wear it every day in my hometown & at work in London but the journey is minimal risk & my workplace is 50m from the station. That feels acceptable in terms of the potential risk.
    A whole day's bimbling around the West End & City, with lagers thrown in, seems like a different proposition.
    It's regrettable but if the worst happened I'd regret it later but not be able to replace the watch. Best to wear a Seiko while privately wishing concealed carry was still a thing in England ..

  43. #43
    Grand Master Seamaster73's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by J J Carter View Post
    Thoughts and prayers etc.
    I LOL-ed.

  44. #44
    Grand Master snowman's Avatar
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    Surely people only buy Rolexes for their residual value don't they?

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  45. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by snowman View Post
    Surely people only buy Rolexes for their residual value don't they?

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    Some do, some of us buy them because James Bond wore one. Turns out the gizmo to unzip dresses is broken on my Sub...

  46. #46
    Grand Master Sinnlover's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Speedy2254 View Post
    Some do, some of us buy them because James Bond wore one. Turns out the gizmo to unzip dresses is broken on my Sub...
    Well that’s your problem, walking about town with a submersible is bound to attract attention, they are massive and grey for a start.

  47. #47
    Master Ruggertech's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sinnlover View Post
    Well that’s your problem, walking about town with a submersible is bound to attract attention, they are massive and grey for a start.
    Aren't some yellow?

  48. #48
    Master beechcustom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Speedy2254 View Post
    Thanks all for the replies, definitely food for thought. I've had a rummage in the watch box & it's going to be a Seiko on a black rubber plain strap.
    No sense in risking me or the Sub especially after a glass or two of dizzyade...
    I think this is sensible. When I'm in London I don't wear a Rolex (or a Tudor for that matter). I wore a Linde Werdelin when we last went to the cricket but that's such a niche brand I felt perfectly safe as the vast majorityof everyone has no idea what it is.

  49. #49
    Grand Master ryanb741's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by beechcustom View Post
    I think this is sensible. When I'm in London I don't wear a Rolex (or a Tudor for that matter). I wore a Linde Werdelin when we last went to the cricket but that's such a niche brand I felt perfectly safe as the vast majorityof everyone has no idea what it is.
    I think you'll find that the type of people who mug folk for their watches have a very good idea of what brands are. Doubtful they'd go for a Tudor - not enough reward vs risk IMHO.

    Much easier to target women with expensive handbags btw - less able to fight back and much easier to spot the target as bags are much bigger than watches

  50. #50

    Central London - Am I Being Daft?

    I donít think itís just about London getting more dangerous. I spent over 20 years working in Soho and wore a Rolex nearly every day, even falling out of pubs and clubs at 2am blind drunk, never a problem. And I never even thought I would get mugged. But this is when steel sports models cost £1500 - £3k and freely available at nearly every AD - which was a lot cheaper comparatively and before watch collecting was mainstream and long before instagram etc etc. Now prices, availability and the whole internet bragging social media/organised looting n Oxford Street cobblers is in vogue - I certainly would never wear a Submariner in Central London! As an aside Iím built like the OP but if anything I think a big bloke can attract a gang of thieves, and weíre no more knife-proof than a little 7 stone fella!

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