STAINLESS steel is set to replace stolen lead on the roof an 18th century lodge at Tatton Park.

The Mere Lodge dates from 1780, and during 2020 thieves have stolen all the building’s leadwork.

Stainless steel is being proposed to replace the stolen lead because of the risk of further thefts given the exposed location of the lodge on the boundary of the park.

In addition the type of stainless steel due to be used has little resale value.

Listed building consent is being sought from Cheshire East Council by the council to replace the former leadwork at the lodge and carry out a structural repair to a cracked stone ring beam above columns.

The application said the lodge leadwork had been stolen on numerous occasions, and none remained on the building.

A report with the application said : “Given the prominent and exposed location of the lodge on the perimeter of the park, it is proposed that a batten terne coated stainless steel roof is installed as a replacement to leadwork.

“Terne coated stainless steel has little resale value and is often used on ecclesiastical buildings.

“While replacement lead is the preferred option, given the risk and exposure of the building it is not a viable option, and leaves the building at risk of damage from water ingress should further lead theft occur.

“Terne coated stainless steel does take time to dull; however following the patination, the likeliness to lead will be indistinguishable to the untrained eye.”

The report said the park had also suffered numerous thefts from buildings and structures on the perimeter of the estate, the latest being the theft of coping stones from the boundary wall.

A Tatton Park spokesman said: "Unfortunately we have had a series of thefts this year, which are being investigated by the police.

"Heritage architects have advised that we should be replacing some of the stolen lead with a sustainable material, and have applied for planning approval for this and some structural repairs."