THREE tonnes of rail lines have been stolen by metal theives.

British Transport Police said the theft, at a yard off Mill Lane, Clitheroe, could have taken place over a number of days.

The theft involved three tonnes of redundant railway track and sleepers early this week.

PC Tony Greenwood said: “The track and the sleepers were being stored near to Mill Lane prior to being permanently disposed of.

“It seems the thieves have broken into the yard before stealing the items – probably over a period of a few days as the track and sleepers would be extremely bulky.

“There is no doubt the thieves would have to use a substantial vehicle of some description to remove the property – simply due to the size and weight of the track and sleepers.

“And it is entirely possible that, to a casual observer, the thieves may have looked as though they were acting legitimately.

“I am now calling on anyone who was in the area at the time and who noticed anything suspicious to come forward.

“Similarly I am calling on any metal recyclers in the area who may have been offered these items to contact us. Rail should only be disposed of at pre-arranged locations and so I urge any recycler who has been offered – or is offered – the metal to give us a call.”

If you have any information which might assist the investigation, please call British Transport Police on 0800 40 50 40 or Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.