Lead stolen from Inglesham Church

The theft at St John the Baptist Church at Inglesham was discovered during a routine maintenance check on Tuesday 11th April.

The Church of St John the Baptist was famously saved by William Morris in 1880s because of its internationally significant collection of wall paintings and was beloved by former poet laureate John Betjeman.

The lead roof theft put the wall paintings at significant risk due to the potential water damage that could have occurred.

Within 24 hours of discovering the loss, we put a temporary roof covering in place to protect the interior of the church.

Meriel O’Dowd, Conservation Projects Manager at The Churches Conservation Trust commented:

‘At The Churches Conservation Trust we are absolutely devastated to discover such a large lead theft at one of our most beautiful, loved and historically significant churches. So that the interior of the church suffers no water damage it is vital that we start work as soon as possible to permanently repair the roof. We will now work with our dedicated volunteers and the local community to start raising the funds needed to safeguard this special church.’

We now need to raise £60,000 to permanently repair the roof and ensure the long-term survival of the wall paintings.  The local community is invited to a meeting at the church at 5pm on Tuesday 6th June to discuss the planned conservation and fundraising for the new roof.

Donations towards the repair of the roof can be given via www.visitchurches.org.uk/IngleshamLeadTheft or by calling Blair Chadwick on 0117 929 1766.