Following the recent spate of of lead thefts form church roofs in the Eastern region, Partner Tony Redman made an appearance on BBC Look East to talk about the problems that churches and their PCC’s face.

Following this we have given some thoughts on 10 ways to protect your lead roof. We would of course always recommend speaking to your own insurance as well. Some of these ideas may also need input from your DAC.

1: Make sure that Smartwater is on all the lead sheets on the roof, and some on the underside as well. Remember that if the lead is rolled up by the thieves, the Smartwater will not be visible to the detector.

2: Visit the church everyday to check for anything strange or new.

3: Keep the church open as much as you can, but put all metal valuables out of site, or beyond a second lock, and hiding ladders and wheelie bins which could be used to gain access.

4: Put grease on the downpipes, starting above head height to avoid snagging the unwary.

5: Invest in an alarm system which makes a lot of noise and light, even if it doesn’t call the police.

6: Make the churchyard secure at night as far as you can

7: Lay a bed of sand across the main ways into the churchyard, at least 50mm deep, to catch tyre tracks or footprints.

8: Install a cheap second hand floodlight looking over the roofs with an Infra red detector or a movement sensor, and video cameras, or dummy cameras.

9: Install a small camera working with a movement sensor to take photographs of the roof or inside the church Cheap equipment can often be found on the internet.

10: Mobilise a neighbourhood watch scheme, with people prepared to record vehicles passing at strange times of the day or night.