Police are appealing for witnesses after a set of wrought iron gates were stolen from the Oxford Crematorium in Bayswater Road.

Thieves removed the gates by cutting the padlock and pulling them off their hinges.

The theft happened some time on the night of Monday, June 7, but details were only released this afternoon.

Police said the gates could be sold as scrap and could fetch as much as £850.

Made from wrought iron, the double gates have black upright poles with decorative gold ‘fleur-de-lys’ in the centre and on top of each pole. They are approximately 5ft tall and fit a 12ft gap.

PC Luke Gardner said: “Due to the weight of the gates, we believe that there must have been a few people involved in this theft, and they could have made a lot of noise.

“A silver pick-up type vehicle was seen in the area at the time, and this may be connected with the incident.

“These distinctive gates may end up being offered for sale as scrap, and I would ask any scrapyard to keep an eye out for them and contact me if they are offered to buy them.”

If you have any information about this incident, please call the 24-hour non-emergency number, 0845 8 505 505. If you don’t want to speak to police or give your name, call the Crimestoppers charity on 0800 555 111.