Diddlers on the roof: Lead thieves strike 30ft up

Thieves stealing lead from the roof of a building in Lightcliffe
Thieves stealing lead from the roof of a building in Lightcliffe

HAVING scaled around 30 feet, these brazen thieves are captured prising the lead from the roof of a building in Lightcliffe.

The pair are just part of an epidemic that has seen thieves stealing any kind of metal they can get their hands on - from manhole covers to railway cables, even memorial plaques.

The crime - which has grown since the price of metal rose - is estimated to cost the country £770 million a year.

In some cases, thieves wear high visibility jackets to fool people into thinking they are workmen.

Police are urging the public to help them catch the culprits by being their eyes and ears.

Inspector Mohammed Nawaz, who leads the Lower Valley neighbourhood policing team, said: “Some people may think it’s a victimless crime, bit it’s far from it.

“If people have any information about metal theft, they should let us know.”

His team have been carrying out a series of operations to tackle metal thieves, stepping up patrols and visiting scrap metal dealers across Calderdale to ask if they have been approached by anyone suspicious.

They have also been stopping vehicles carrying scrap metal to check their are legitimate traders.

The Courier reported last week how raiders tried to steal lead flashing from the roof of the Shears Inn, Paris Gates, Halifax. Pub manager Tony Crow, 56, was woken by the noise they were making, pulled o his slippers and tried to chase them.

Last month how Ken Knowles was left heartbroken after thieves stole three metal memorial plaques - for his wife, mother-in-law and father-in-law - from a bench in Copley.

And earlier this year nearly £1,000 worth of lead flashing was stolen from the Smith Art Gallery in Brighouse.

In other parts of the country, the crime has also cost lives. A 16-year-old boy was killed in Leeds just last July as he apparently tried to steal cabling at an electricity substation.

Police are asking people to keep an eye out for anyone acting suspiciously, people going up people’s driveways, or dressed as workmen working at odd hours. Registration details of any vehicles they are using should also be taken,

Anyone with concerns or information about the theft pictures, which happened on Wakefield Road in Lightcliffe between 9pm on August 9 and 1.30pm on August 11, should call police on 0845 6060606 or Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555111.