Scrap metal laws to stop metal theft came into force on 1 October
Anne Sloman, Chair of the Church of England's Church Buildings Council commented: "The Council has worked hard with the Home Office to get this legislation on the statute book and we are grateful to Ministers and officials who have approached this problem with such determination. We believe it will be crucial in reducing the scourge of lead theft which has scarred so many of our churches in the past few years and caused such grief to congregations and communities who work hard to keep our 16,000 parish churches in good condition. The numbers of thefts are already going down, but we cannot be complacent. Every church roof that is vandalised by thieves is one too many and we must all remain vigilant. But this legislation is a very important step in the right direction."