Church insurer installs roof alarms on 'at-risk' churches

Thieves strip lead from church roof Church insurers said the alarms would make churches a "harder target" for criminals

Related Stories

A church insurer is fitting alarms to church roofs in Yorkshire, Cambridgeshire and Suffolk to reduce metal theft.

The alarms are being installed at some of the most "at-risk" churches at a cost of £500,000.

Ecclesiastical, which insures 97% of Anglican churches, received more than 2,600 metal theft claims in 2011.

The company said a pilot scheme had shown installing alarms had "significantly" reduced thefts.

All churches in the dioceses of Ripon and Leeds, Peterborough, and St Edmundsbury and Ipswich, will display signs warning criminals of the presence of roof alarms.

The diocese of Ripon and Leeds said the alarms were virtually undetectable from the ground.

Details of the alarms and their locations are not being revealed, a spokesman for the diocese said.

Ecclesiastical said the diocese of Peterborough had more than 70 claims for metal theft costing £160,000 in 2011.

The diocese of Ripon and Leeds made more than 50 claims costing in excess of £60,000 and the Suffolk diocese of St Edmundsbury and Ipswich had lodged 25 claims costing more than £55,000.

John Coates, Ecclesiastical's director of church insurance, said: "It will make churches a harder target for criminals intent on stripping the nation's heritage of roofing lead for their personal gain."

The scheme is being rolled out across all 42 Anglican dioceses in the UK.

More on This Story

Related Stories

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites

More England stories


Features & Analysis

Elsewhere on the BBC

  • KnucklesGood or bad?

    For many it can be very satisfying to 'crack' the bones in your hand, but is it bad for you?


  • BatteriesClick Watch

    More power to your phone - the lithium-ion batteries that could last twice as long

Try our new site and tell us what you think. Learn more
Take me there

Copyright © 2015 BBC. The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.