Thefts News United Kingdom

Medieval panels stolen from Devon church

Thieves snatch two saints and damage a third from the 15th-century rood screen at Holy Trinity, Torbryan

The late 15th-century rood screen before and after the theft

The Henrician and Cromwellian iconoclasms destroyed most British medieval religious art, making any survivals very precious. The theft last month of two panels from the rood screen in the church of Holy Trinity, Torbryan, Devon, is, therefore, a major tragedy for the art world.

The stolen panels show St Victor of Marseilles and St Margaret of Antioch. The thieves also damaged a neighbouring panel of a female saint.

The oak rood, otherwise intact, was constructed and painted between 1460 and 1470, and the artistry is of a very high quality. The church is in the care of the Churches Conservation Trust (CCT), a national charity that aims to protect historic churches at risk.

If you have any information about the missing panels, please contact Laoise Bailey at the CCT,, telephone: +44 (0)20 7841 0415, mobile: +44 07831 873 515.

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16 Mar 15
18:1 CET


A tragedy for this church at Torbryan.Is there any good news to report on this theft or of any restoration prospects.

15 Aug 13
19:56 CET


What an utterly contemptible thing to do. Vile. A tragedy.

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