If you have bronze statues or water features in your garden, beware, as metal thieves are targeting these.
In recent months, our claims team have helped two of our clients to find a replacement for unusual ornaments that were stolen from their private gardens. Both of these were presents from family members for special birthdays and as such are irreplaceable. Neither was adequately insured, even though their insurer paid the sum insured this wasn’t enough to replace them.
Headline grabbing thefts have been around over the past few years for thefts such as the Two Forms by Dame Barbara Hepworth and the Standing Figure by Henry Moore; both of which were stolen from public parks but have never been traced. Equally surprising is the daytime theft of a Black Panther statue from a Chelsea art gallery. Colour CCTV images, of the theft taking place, have been issued by the police but regrettably the thief hasn’t been tracked down.
Copper wires are being stolen from train lines and although this doesn’t harm us personally it can disrupt our travel plans and daily commute. It’s hard to think the two types of theft could be connected but bronze has a very high copper content and thieves will take the easiest route to get it.
Public parks and train lines are open and visible to the public, yet these thieves are rarely apprehended. Most of us like to have a garden which isn’t over looked so hedges can be left to grow quite tall. While these provide seclusion for you they give cover for thieves to be hidden from view while doing their work. To protect your garden ornaments follow these tips:
- For smaller items consider a plant anchor. These are specifically designed to protect shrubs and trees and consist of a steel cable which loops round the base of the plant/ornament. This attaches to an anchoring device which is driven into undisturbed ground. If you try to pull it out the hinged anchor tip digs into the soil and won’t come out. It can be dug out but the time factor may deter a thief.
- Items can be mark or tagged so they can be traced back to you if recovered.
- Take photos next to something that enables size and height to be determined. It’s also useful to record any distinguishing marks.