Bronze Age gold stolen during museum break-in

Curators are "devastated" after gold objects dating back 3,000 years to the Bronze Age were stolen from a museum.

A gold torc and a gold bracelet were stolen during a break-in at Ely Museum on Tuesday.

The museum acquired the torc, valued at £220,000, in 2017 using grants and donations and it said the loss was a "huge blow".

Cambridgeshire Police said itwas looking for two suspects on e-scooters who were believed to be involved in the burglary.

'Cannot be replaced'

Elie Hughes, a museum curator, said: "We are devastated by the loss to the museum and to the local heritage of the region.

"It is a huge blow after the incredible support from the community in acquiring the torc in 2017.

"As a culturally significant object, it cannot be replaced. Our priority now is working with the police to locate the stolen objects."

Both items were found in East Cambridgeshire by metal detectorists.

The torc, found in a ploughed field, is regarded as the best found in England in more than a century as it is larger than many other examples and made of 730g (1lb 10oz) of almost pure gold.

Det Insp Kiri Mazur said: "The theft of these items is despicable and we are focused on identifying the offenders, tracing the items, and returning them to their rightful place.

"We are working closely with staff at Ely Museum to follow all lines of inquiry.

“I am very keen to hear from anyone who may be able to provide information or saw two people on e-scooters who were in the vicinity the museum, car park and pedestrian walkways at the back of the museum, the council offices and the Grange Car Park, between 12am and 2am [on Tuesday].”

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