Castle raid Reward offered as historic collection snatched
HIGHLY valuable and historically important artefacts have been stolen “under cover of darkness” from Sudeley Castle and now there’s a £10,000 reward for the items’ safe return.
In the early hours of Sunday morning, four offenders forced their way into the exhibition area of the stately home in Winchcombe, where they smashed a display case and stole valuable jewellery and artefacts contained within.
CCTV images reportedly show the four offenders approach the property with a chair, sledgehammer and a large garden or builder’s bag.
Police said they made off in a 4x4 vehicle which was parked nearby.
Sudeley Castle’s owner Lady Ashcombe said: “We are all saddened to learn of this burglary. They were beautiful artefacts on display for everyone to enjoy and were very precious to me personally.”
Detectives from Gloucestershire police are investigating the incident and the castle’s insurer is prepared to offer the reward for the return of the items. The offenders stole:
» A presentation gold box, Swiss, late 18th century, with a miniature of Edward VII set in diamonds
» A presentation gold and enamel box with the Prince of Wales feathers set in diamonds
» A Cartier watch monogrammed AK (Alice Keppel), 1910
» A Fabergé gold cigarette case set with diamonds
» A Fabergé silver caviar box and silvermounted vodka glasses, c1910
» A gold snuffbox, Paris 1783
» A silver cigarette case by Marshak, Kiev 1908
» A book of extracts from Sydney Smith, given to Alice Keppel by King Edward VII
Detective Superintendent Steve Bean said: “This burglary happened under cover of darkness, but it is still possible that someone may have witnesses suspicious behaviour at or near the property in the hours leading up to it or afterwards, and may be able to help us identify the offenders.
“Clearly the stolen items are very distinctive and have a great deal of historical, as well as financial, value.
“They should be easy to identify and if anyone is aware of them being offered for sale I would urge them to report it to police as soon as possible.”
The reward is being offered strictly on the basis that the entire collection of items listed above is returned to Sudeley Castle and that all of the items in the collection are returned in their original, undamaged condition.
The insurer of Sudeley Castle does, however, reserve the right to pay the reward if only part of the collection is returned in an undamaged condition, or where the entire collection is returned but some of the items in the are damaged in any way.
Payment of the reward in these circumstances is at the sole discretion of Sudeley Castle’s insurer which will be under no obligation to pay the reward and whose decision will be final. For all enquiries relating to the reward contact en[email protected]ley.org.uk
Anyone with information about the burglary has been asked to contact Gloucestershire police on 101 quoting incident 110 of September 8.
Clearly the stolen items are very distinctive and have a great deal of historical, as well as financial, value
Detective Superintendent Steve Bean
The items stolen from Sudeley Castle were of historic and personal value