My Nametags recently ran a social experiment to see how many people in cities and towns throughout the UK would return a child’s lost teddy bear – with staggering results!

Exactly half of the nation will take the time to call and return a lost bear


Which location returned the most bears?

York was the place where the most bears were returned – 75% of the bears made their way back to us. Bears lost in cafés and coffee shops were revealed by the research to be in most luck when it comes to being reunited with their owners – 85% were found and returned.

How long did it take the bears to be returned?

Of those bears that were returned, 68% made their way home within the first 24 hours of being lost. Bears that weren’t returned within the first four days then have a less than 1% chance of being reunited with their owner.

What made people return the bears?

Richard Wiseman, a Professor of the Public Understanding of Psychology at the University of Hertfordshire, had the answers. He said: “The research shows that people carry out acts of kindness when they feel some kind of empathy for others. When people see a lost bear they are likely to think that it may be have been dropped by a child, who is now frantically searching for the bear. This effect is applied by the bear having a nametag - It is no longer just a bear - now it has an identity and is even more likely to produce feelings of empathy.”

Did more men or women return the bears?

Women were the most likely to call to reunite the lost bear – 64% in fact. Tom or Sarah were the most common names of the good Samaritans.

How old were members of the public who called?

Teddy bears lost in the experiment pulled at the heartstrings of those aged between 21 and 30, as almost 40 percent of the heroes who returned the bears were between this age range.

What does the research show?

The research really shows how caring we are as a nation. The average person loses over 3,000 items in a lifetime, and while this often can’t be helped, the experiment just shows that by putting nametags on your most treasured items, you’re giving yourself a 50 percent chance that it will be returned by a caring member of the public. We thank all these kind people that took part in the study and urge anyone who finds a lost item with a nametag to try and reunite it with their owner. You never know just how important it might be to them!


Every month, the average person is expected to lose four items. My Nametags surveyed 2,000 adults and found the average person loses more than 3,000 items in their lifetime.




Whether you are a parent trying to cope with the everyday hassle of lost belongings, or a teacher of nursery or primary school who'd like to prevent the issue of lost property, colour sticker nametags are the easiest and most effective solution.

My Nametags specialises in producing the highest quality name labels on the market: 100% washable and tumble dryer proof, rub resistant, they can be applied onto all everyday items including the inside of the shoes! Choosing My Nametags labels, offering 3 lines of text and a colourful design and background of your choice, you could have everything easily returned by adding your mobile number or the class attended by your child.

LOST PROPERTY IN THE UK: USEFUL LINKS Find out if property you lost has been handed in!

Our customers on lost and found property:
"My daughter cardigan was lost in the nursery... thanks to My Nametags label on it the parent who took it by mistake found it out it wasn't their."
More independent reviews