THIEVES have stolen floodlights worth £20,000 from Wearside’s Penshaw Monument.
Raiders used boltcroppers to break through security gates around the monument and into the steel ground casings that housed the lights.
The thieves appear to have gone to some considerable effort on this and yet the lights are of little use to anybody.Les Clark, Head of Streetscene at Sunderland City Council
They are valued at £20,000, are low-wattage, hi-tech energy efficient, emit no heat, and are designed for outdoor floodlighting use only.
All nine of the specialised and new floodlighting units were taken between 5pm on Friday, April 17 and 8am on Monday, April 20.
The Philips LED Color Reach units were installed at the monument as part of a scheme being overseen by Sunderland City Council to upgrade the monument lighting.
Les Clark, Head of Streetscene, at Sunderland City Council, said: “This has set work back on new and updated floodlighting for one of Sunderland’s and, indeed, the region’s most loved and recognisable landmarks.
“We’ve had extensive surveys and licensing works to complete for this work on a listed structure, then had to wait for better ground conditions, and this theft has set the installation back.
“We had been hoping to begin some testing in the coming weeks so this is very frustrating for people who have been working on this project.
“The thieves appear to have gone to some considerable effort on this and yet the lights are of little use to anybody. They are for specialised floodlighting operations and cannot be used as growlights.”
The lighting units are a Philips Color Reach Compact Powercore designed for large scale installations, are attached to a frame and measure 29 inches by 9 inches in size.
Neighbourhood Inspector Lisa Musgrove, said: “We’re carrying out enquiries into the theft and are asking any witnesses to come forward.
“If anyone was in the area and saw anything suspicious, or has information about where the floodlights are or has been offered floodlights for sale, we would ask them to contact us.”
Anyone with information can contact police on 101 ext 69191 quoting reference 289 190415 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.