FLASHING thieves were disturbed as they attempted to steal 70ft of lead waterproofing from a village hall roof.
Two people had removed all the lead flashing from the roof of Manley Sports and Social Club, within the village hall in Tarvin Road, and were thought to be waiting to transport it when trustee chairman and parish councillor Chris Cowap, 60, disturbed them.
He said: “It was about 8.45pm on Sunday night and I switched on the outside lights so I could see down one side of the building, then went around the other side and saw two small people running through the car park. I chased them but they went through a gap in a barbed wire fence and away into the field.
“The lead flashing was left in a pile. It has caused a lot of destruction, luckily I can afford to take time off to sort out the insurance.
“I caught them doing it but they ran before I could get to them.”
The valuable lead flashing was only put up three years ago and was expected to last a long time.
It is hoped the club’s insurance will cover the majority of the damage caused, but the Manley meeting place will have to pay the first £250.
Chris added: “We have permission to have it replaced, it’s got to be completely done. Where they pulled the lead out it has pulled all the mortar out of the brick work.”
The roof will be replaced with a lead-free waterproof flashing which is more environmentally friendly and has no re-sale value.
“I’m quite pleased, it’s half the price of the lead and it won’t get stolen again.”