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Thieves have targeted St John's Church in Epping twice this month
Thieves caused thousands of pounds worth of damage to a church after ripping lead from its roof.
St John’s Church in Epping has been targeted twice in three days.
Warden Steve Carter said even copper lightning rods were stolen during the latest raid.
He said: “We only noticed (the thefts) when it started to rain and it was coming into the church. I went up on a ladder and saw that a section had gone missing.
“A few days later somebody told us that there was a load of lead in the skip behind Argus lighting. I checked the roof and we had been targeted again.
“I think that they had left it there to pick up later.
“The cost will go into the thousands to repair. We have to consult English Heritage because it is a Grade II listed building.”
Mr Carter is warning people to be vigilant.
He said: “I would warn people to be careful, even homeowners.
“I have heard about garages being targeted in Epping. It would have been helpful if we had been told about the thefts beforehand.”
Sports centres and churches in the district were targeted in a spate earlier this year, including the David Lloyd gym in Chigwell.
A spokesman for the police said that are aware of the crime but that they believe it has become less frequent since July.
Anyone with information on the church thefts, which took place between September 9 and September 11, is asked to call 101.
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