Scrap metal thieves target 108-year-old Bath crane
Scrap metal thieves have targeted a 108-year-old historic crane which is a key part of Bath’s industrial heritage.
Three iron counterweights have been taken from the 1904 Stothert and Pitt steam crane, which has been on display at the new Western Riverside housing development.
A fourth weight was discovered lying alongside the crane’s rail track, suggesting the culprits may have been disturbed as they tried to make off with the parts.
Councillor Bryan Chalker (Con, Lambridge), who is Bath and North East Somerset Council’s heritage champion, is now worried there could be a safety risk.
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He says that if any more weights are stolen from the site of the internationally-known engineering firm’s factory, the 40ft crane could topple over.
Mr Chalker added: “It was built close to this site in 1904, has survived all these years as a working crane, only to fall foul of the scourge of scrap metal scavengers.
“This wonderful old steam relic is on display as a tribute to Bath’s great crane maker, Stothert and Pitt and deserves a better fate than this.”
The crane is on display at the Western Riverside site as part of a wider art and heritage project and there are plans by developer Crest Nicholson for a small fence to be installed around it over the coming months.
Bath police have confirmed they are investigating the theft and have appealed for anyone with information to come forward and contact them on 101.