Thieves steal bronze plaques from Derby war memorial

Image caption,
The war memorial was built to honour railwaymen who died in World War I

The theft of bronze plaques from a war memorial in Derby has been described by council leaders as "deplorable".

Thieves took the plaques, which contain the names of thousands of men who died in World War I, from a memorial close to Derby station.

It honours employees of the Midland Railway who enlisted and died in the war.

The memorial in Derby's Midland Road is Grade II-listed and was built in 1921.

Scrap metal

The theft was reported to police on Wednesday morning but it is not known exactly when they were taken.

Dennis Monk, whose wife's uncle Richard Gibson died in the Battle of the Somme, said: "I looked to the left and to my shock and horror I couldn't believe what I was looking at."

Thieves stole several of the bronze plaques and dumped several others on the ground.

"One of the plaques was badly bent and the others must have gone to the scrap merchants," he added.

Police are investigating the theft and the city council has described the theft as "one of the most deplorable acts of crime that we can imagine".

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