Plan to repair Hougham church roof after lead stolen
Plans have been submitted to replace lead which was stolen from a village church in November with a different material.
Villagers and churchgoers in Hougham were sickened when they discovered that a large amount of lead had been stolen overnight and large chunks of masonry had been damaged.
It is believed a gang of thieves had stripped the lead from the chancel and north aisle roofs, managing to bypass an alarm system. They broke off masonry to get at the lead. Large chunks of masonry were discovered on the ground by the church the next day.
A decision has not yet been made on whether to repair the roof with more lead or terne-coated stainless steel. The latter material looks similar to lead and is likely a cheaper alternative, but repairing the roof with lead runs the risk of theft again.
A Remembrance service the day after the theft had to be cancelled and the church remained closed until December 11. Members of the church told the Journal at the time they believed the thieves must have staked out the building beforehand in order to get around the security system.
A planning application has been submitted by surveyors Hutton and Rostron, of Gelston, to re-cover the chancel and north aisle roofs of the church.