Strong-arm thieves nick one tonne anchor

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POLICE are appealing for information after thieves stole a ship’s anchor weighing around a tonne.

Over the weekend of March 12 and 13 the anchor, which had been salvaged by a RAF bomb disposal unit while combing the beach, was taken from the Goswick Sands area.

Michael Stewart, a civilian explosive ordnance driver, described how he was in the process of removing all the concretions with a view to displaying the six-foot piece of history.

The anchor was found by the wreck of the Sea Belle, which ran aground on the Goswick Sands just north of Holy Island in 1889 en route to Sunderland laden with pit props.

Some of her ribs and the keel of the 100-tonne ship can still be seen at low tide bedded in the sand.

Mr Stewart said it was frustrating that it was stolen after their efforts to learn its origins.

“We have tried to recover it, put it to some good as a bit of history, and someone has just taken it for scrap value.”

Berwick Neighbourhood Inspector Peter Duguid said: “It would have taken a number of people or specialised lifting equipment to have moved the anchor due to its sheer size and weight.

“If anyone saw anyone in the area over the weekend trying to move the anchor, or acting suspiciously, then contact us with any information.”

Anyone with any information into the theft or as to the whereabouts of the anchor is asked to contact police on 03456 043043 ext 69191 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.