Lead Theft – The Ba*$#”%ds

By Andy the stuff doer

We had just got the new roof all water tight but left the scaffolding up to do the rendering around the back. BIG MISTAKE.  The first I noticed was whilst working in the Attic one evening, the gable wall should have been getting drier instead it was soaking.  So the next morning I went up the scaffolding to find the bottom section of new lead flashing gone!

I scratched my head for a while wondering what the builders could have done. Then I checked the front, yes that had gone too.  Then the blood started to boil, I realised I was a victim. Admittedly a relatively “small” crime but the feeling of powerlessness, indignation and anger can be quite overwhelming.  A few deep breaths and a bit of mental control got me back on to my more normal stoic demeanour. ( I only slipped back a few times that day).

Lead flashing stolen from the roof

Lead fladhing stolen from roof, accessed from scaffolding

 At the front they took the flashing from both sides. An easy steal from the scaffolding although brazen on a busy street.

Lead theft from the front roof

Lead theft from the both sides of roof, all they could reach from the scaffolding

With my head back under control I could formulate a plan of action to get things sorted.

  1. Ring the police
  2. Ring the builder
  3. Ring the Missus

After reporting the crime on the non emergency 101, I was pleasantly surprised when a WPC arrived within a couple an hours, took the details, a statement and started an investigation. They were taking it seriously and yes I should report even the most minor of crimes, it helps them build up a picture and could be an important link to other crimes. Although the officer thought it would be unlikely that would catch anyone she interviewed the neighbours, the builders, contacted local business and discovered a time and rough description and the criminals and their vehicle.  It was about half past seven in the evening, a man with a bundle of something heavy and red van up the road.  Unfortunately the CCTV couldn’t get the number so the investigation was closed. So no result there, but it felt much better to have had the Police look in to it, maybe the Low Life Scum will be caught and punished at some point. So a big THANKS to Whitby Police and in particular to the officer that handled the incident, I’m impressed and grateful.

The second call brought the builder out on (arriving before the police on a Saturday Morning). He measured up for new lead and came up with a plan.  He would replace the lead on the front Monday morning and get the scaffolding taken down in the afternoon.  The back he would leave until the rendering was done so he could do the same at the back.  The plan worked, we are water tight and hopefully staying that way. 

The call to Missus brought comfort as well, I did right.  

The total cost to me has been in the region of £350 all for a scrap value of around £50 grrrr. I am insured but won’t be making a claim, after the excess and possible future premium increases it’s not worth it.  It’s all sorted now, I can swallow the extra on the budget and although the time wasted is lost forever it’s behind us now.

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