Sir – A few weeks ago you reported the theft of lead from the roof of our 14th-century church at Warkworth, overlooking the Cherwell Valley and Banbury.

We had three visits in four nights to clear it all off! As a result of your article we have had very generous donations from readers who wish to help replace the roof and through your column I would like to thank them most sincerely. We are now in the process of getting quotes for a new roof and also starting the process of fundraising. In addition to the generosity of several individuals we have had offers from local people to organise events in order to raise money. We have now made the church watertight so services can continue. The Dunkirk spirit comes to mind. Thieves even took our CCTV cameras and a memorial bench belonging to the local Fenemore family — the latter now having been found in woods on a nearby country estate. If only these thugs could understand the huge amount of damage they are doing to precious listed buildings such as ours — and many others they have plundered recently in and around Oxfordshire and Northants.

Bob Langton, Churchwarden, St Mary’s, Warkworth