Lead thieves strike again at Maltings

ELY’S iconic Maltings was targeted yet again by lead thieves on Monday night, the fifth time in two years that the building has been hit.

On this occasion, however, the thieves were disturbed by police as they went about stripping lead from the roof and fled the scene empty-handed.

Although an estimated �500 worth of lead was left at the scene by the offenders, police and Maltings officials say that they caused more than �1000-worth of damage.

The attack comes just a month after thieves made off with hundreds of pounds worth of lead in a similar raid on January 25.

According to police, Monday night’s raid took place between 10.30pm and 10.55pm, with thieves stripping and piling up a large quantity of lead from the 19th Century building before fleeing.

Data obtained under the Freedom of Information Act by the Ely Standard showed that on average, over the last two years, metal theft had been occurring at least twice a week in the towns and villages across the district.

A total of 258 incidents were recorded, with householders the hardest hit by thieves, with 94 incidents of metal being stolen from homes across the area.

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Across Cambridgeshire there were 793 incidents of metal theft in 2009, 1,443 in 2010 and more than 1,500 in 2011. Police estimate that the total value of the metal stolen over that period amounts to a whopping �3,697,976.

Anyone with information is advised to contact Cambridgeshire police on 101.