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Vandals ransack two Kingston churches in one night
5:30pm Monday 28th January 2013 in News
Vandals have caused hundreds of pounds worth of damage after breaking in to two Kingston churches on the same night.
Historic stained glass windows were smashed, cupboards were ransacked and vestments were left scattered as the hoodlums searched for cash and valuables.
The break-ins, at St Luke's Church in Gibbon Road and St Paul's in Queen's Road, both happened on Friday night.
At St Luke's, two windows, including one dating back to the Victorian era, were smashed, while a gold thread vestment was damaged and cupboards were broken into and their contents strewn across the vestry office.
Keys were also stolen - forcing the church to replace all of its locks.
Father Martin Hislop said: "It was an awful thing to see. There is significant damage. It was very upsetting for our parishioners.
"They've gone into our hall, smashed our stained glass windows, and gone into the vestry office and deliberately destroyed the CCTV.
"They were quite methodical. They smashed the external CCTV cameras, disconnected the monitors and smashed them as well. They knew what they were doing.
"The stained glass windows will have to be replaced, but I suspect the biggest cost will be the replacement of every lock in the church, and our wall safe."
Reverend Simon Coupland, of St Paul's Church, said he believed the trespasser was disturbed during the break-in.
"We were very fortunate. I'm fairly sure the intruder must have been disturbed.
"A stained glass window was used as means of access and a cupboard was forced open but nothing else was damaged."
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