POLICE in Bridgwater are cracking down on scrap metal theft after a series of raids across the area.

Middlezoy recycling centre has been hit four times in the last three weeks by people breaking in and stealing metal.

PCSO Helen Whitehead, officer for Middlezoy, said: “Various items have been stolen, such as TVs and other scrap metal. It's increasing, so we really want anyone with information to come forward.”

Sgt Gary Young of Bridgwater police said: “It's a big concern for us. People have even stolen the metal gates from churches before. There was a burglary near the docks in Drawbridge House where copper piping was taken from an abandoned building.

“We have been suffering from thefts from scrap metal yards but also where people have been stealing scrap from copper pipes from newly-built homes.”

Scrap metal yards and recycling centres have been working with the police to catch the thieves.

Sgt Young said: “With known scrap metal thieves, we know what vehicles they drive. When they are caught on the ANPR (Automatic Number Plate Register) cameras, those vehicles registered get picked up by the cameras and alert the police immediately.”

If you have any information on scrap metal thefts, contact the police on their non-emergency number 101.