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Theft of metal protect your property

Metal theft is one of the most serious problems that places of worship face. As well as stealing metal, thieves are causing damage to the fabric of the building during the course of the theft. Internal furnishings are also at risk of being damaged as a result of rainwater leaks that can occur before the theft is discovered.

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What can churches do?

The level of risk churches face is different in each case. To find out how at risk your church is we have developed a useful risk assessment tool. Security protection doesn't need to be expensive and there are a number of common sense and practical measures that can be taken to reduce the likelihood of metal theft. These include:

Using a Methodist Insurance approved forensic property marker, such as SmartWater, this is a current condition of your insurance cover. By painting at least a fraction of each metal surface with a forensic property marker and displaying the signs you may deter potential thieves. You must make sure that your kit is registered with the supplier; because it can also help with an investigation should a theft still occur.

For the latest news from SmartWater and to see how it is being used successfully more widely, please visit the SmartWater website.

You can buy additional SmartWater supplies, direct from SmartWater, at a discounted rate to policyholders. SmartWater can also supply signage such as posters, plastic signs and stickers. For more information please can 01952 204102 or email

  • Engaging with your local community - joining the local Neighbourhood Watch scheme and asking the church's neighbours to keep a watchful eye out for anything suspicious around the church can be a big help costing nothing.

  • Reading our theft of metal guidance notes which have practical measures you can take to protect your church from falling prey to metal theft.

  • Considering installing a roof alarm system. The Methodist Insurance approved alarms have been trialled on churches at a number of metal theft hot spots with very encouraging results. If you fit a Methodist approved roof alarm.

  • Insurance approved roof alarm we may be able to increase your metal theft cover depending on individual circumstances. For more information read the roof alarm factsheet.

Important change to our theft of external metals policy condition.

As detailed within Methodist Insurance policy documents, the use of a forensic property marker, such as SmartWater is a current condition of insurance cover.

Insurance is there to protect you in the event of unexpected losses and events. As theft of metal has increased in frequency in recent years, it is no longer an unexpected event and more of an unfortunate inevitability.

As a result, we have had to review our theft of external metals policy condition and we will be withdrawing all external metal theft insurance cover for churches that have not: applied a forensic property marker to external metal displayed the signage and registered the kit with the supplier.

Churches that have already complied with the theft of external metals policy conditions listed above will not be affected by this change. They will continue to have external metal theft cover to their existing policy limits.

Methodist Insurance PLC (MIC) Reg. No. 6369. Registered in England at Beaufort House, Brunswick Road, Gloucester, GL1 1JZ. Methodist Insurance PLC is authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority, Firm Reference Number 136423.