Norwich man in court for lead theft

A Norwich man who has 'fallen on hard times' climbed onto a roof and stole lead, a court has heard.

Peter Lowe, of Hellesdon Road in Norwich, scaled a Grade II listed derelict building owned by Norwich City Council on February 21.

The 50-year-old was spotted on the building on All Saints Green, which was has been a dental surgery and a Buddhist centre, and the police were called.

Prosecutor Mark Davis told Norwich Magistrates that police immediately arrested Lowe, who was carrying a rucksack containing tools.

The cost of repair would be around �3,000, he added.

Ryan Creek said in mitigation that Lowe had been a successful businessman who had fallen on hard times in 1995.

He had a relationship breakdown and suffered from depression.

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'He found himself without any money and without any money to feed himself.'

Mr Creek said it was the first time Lowe had tried to take lead from a roof even thought the building had a history of being vandalised.

'He is ashamed of himself and he would like to start up a business again in the mechanics industry', he said.

Lowe was ordered to carry out 150 hours of unpaid work. The sentence also took into account two breached conditional discharges for possession of cannabis and theft

They did not order compensation because of Lowe's limited means.

Following the case, a spokesman for Norwich City Council said: 'We are pleased to see this case coming to court and would like to praise the prompt action of the police.'