Thieves Strike at Local Museum

Unique Victorian ceramics taken from De Morgan Centre

Related Articles
Sign up for our free weekly newsletter

Comment on this story on the

Unique works of art have been stolen after thieves struck at a local museum. The burglary occurred at the De Morgan Centre on Sunday 29 th July at 1.30am .

The De Morgan Centre is a museum inside the West Hill Library on West Hill and holds an extensive collection of nineteenth-century arts and crafts ceramics.

Police arrived at the scene and found a wooden ladder outside the building leading to the first floor toilet window. The wire mesh window covering had been cut and the bathroom door had been forced open to gain access to the main floor.

The museum's main exhibition room contains original work by William De Morgan, the Victorian ceramicist. The burglar(s) had smashed a glass cabinet and stole some of the expensive plates and jugs it contained. They also damaged some of the ceramics, which were left at the scene.

They are unique pieces of art that include a red and gold lustre dish of a snake wrapped around the body of a winged dragon; a red and gold lustre dish with three peacocks; and a two handled lustre urn with snakes and putti (cherubs) playing musical instruments.

Detective Sergeant Neil Philpott, the investigating officer, said , "A man was seen loitering outside the building and we are appealing for any information that can help us trace him or the people responsible for this. The ceramics belong in a museum for the public to see, so we need your help to return them to their rightful place."

Anyone with information should call Wandsworth police's burglary squad on 020 8247 8748 or make an anonymous report to Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

No one has been arrested, inquiries continue.

August 3, 2007