Cumbria

Wordsworth's 'irreplaceable' prayer book stolen from Cumbria church

St Oswald's Church, Grasmere Image copyright Google
Image caption William Wordsworth worshipped at St Oswald's Church and - along with his family - is buried in the church yard

A prayer book belonging to the poet William Wordsworth has been stolen from a church in Cumbria.

The book, which dates from 1835, was on display in a glass cabinet at St Oswald's Church in Grasmere, and was taken between 17:30 BST on Tuesday and 10:30 on Wednesday.

The value of the book is not known but the church warden Sonia Rickman described it as "irreplaceable".

She said those responsible obviously knew what they were looking for.

"The church was open, we only close it in the evening. The first I heard was when someone rang me to say the glass had been smashed, that's when we found out it had gone.

"Wordsworth lived in Grasmere, he prayed at our church and he's buried in our churchyard, so it's quite a loss," said Ms Rickman.

"A lot of people come to see where he was buried."

Cumbria Police has appealed for information, and urged antique dealers to look out for anyone attempting to sell it.

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