Another setback for Heysham church

Heysham's St Peter's Church.
Heysham's St Peter's Church.
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Heysham’s St Peter’s Church has suffered yet another blow after garden equipment was stolen in an over night raid.

After months of hard work to repair the roof from a previous slate burglary, organisers have now been set back further to try and replace garden tools.

Two mowers, a strimmer and a leaf blower were taken from a storage unit at the back of St Peter’s Hall between November 11-12.

The equipment will cost approximately £4,000 to replace and will add a further increase to the church’s insurance.

Sylvia Welberry, Parish Secretary, is confused by the incident as an 8ft wall encloses the storage unit.

Mrs Welberry said: “How they got them over the wall I don’t know, it is an 8ft wall, nobody saw or heard anything, it is weird!

“They broke the padlock off the shed, it is crazy.”

It is the second burglary to happen to the church within 12 months.

The first spate occurred when lead from the roof was stolen, allowing water to pour into the church above the altar.

Mrs Welberry said: “It’s one of those things, we have got used to it now, it is a shame but what can you do?”

Although the roof is the main priority for the church, the garden equipment was vital to help keep the grounds neat and tidy especially during weddings.

Mrs Welberry said: “It is equipment we need to maintain the gardens. We don’t want the grass to be very long for the brides so we keep it looking neat. We are trying to keep the place going and keep it up to a standard, it is something we don’t need at this point in time and now we will have to replace them.”

The team at St Peter’s are hoping to put more security lighting into the grounds to try and deter thefts in the future.

Heysham village have been endeavouring to raise money to repair the roof over recent months.

The roof on the Grade 1 listed building has been deteriorating for nearly 20 years.

Work is currently in progress with builders and contractors complying with checks on the building.

Mrs Welberry said: “It is so sad that people feel the need to steal, especially from our much loved and visited ancient monument.”