THIEVES have stolen farm gates worth over £200.
Farmers Beryl and Tom Bird, who live on Naisberry Farm, in Elwick, Hartlepool, woke up to find their new galvanised steel gates missing just three weeks after they had been installed.
And now there is a 10ft by 8ft gaping hole, where the double gates were once fixed, in the side of their field in Elwick Road.
Beryl has since reported the theft to Cleveland Police and contacted the town’s scrapyards to keep an eye out for the stolen made-to-order gates.
Beryl, whose business at the farm is called SN Bird and Sons, told the Mail: “The gates were welded into position just three weeks ago because we wanted to try to tidy the place up and instead of having just gaps in the fencing we wanted to have proper gates.
“So Tom and a lad who works for us have been installing gates around the land to smarten the place up, and this is what happens.
“We woke up on the morning, drove past and they’re just gone. We couldn’t believe it, it’s really disappointing.”
She said: “Someone’s obviously come past and fancied it for themselves, or fancied the scrap value and actually cut it off.
“They have obviously come with tools because you can’t just lift them off.
“I’ve rang the police who have recorded it and I’ve rang around all the scrapyards, and they’ve told me that if any gates come in then they’ll contact me straight away.”
A spokeswoman for Cleveland Police said the theft, which happened some time overnight from Monday into Tuesday, has been recorded and officers are investigating.
She said: “Anyone who has any information about this theft, or knows who is responsible, should get in touch.”
Anyone who can help in the inquiry should contact officers on 101, or contact Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.