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Medieval church vandalism case closed

PUBLISHED: 11:47 02 October 2019 | UPDATED: 11:58 02 October 2019

St Margaret’s Ruined Church in Hopton was torched in an arson attack in the early hours of Friday morning. Picture: Ian Wall

St Margaret’s Ruined Church in Hopton was torched in an arson attack in the early hours of Friday morning. Picture: Ian Wall

Archant

An investigation into vandalism at a medieval church has been closed due to lack of evidence.

Flint has fallen from the top of the walls of St Margaret's Ruined Church in Hopton after reports of criminal damage between June 10 and 12. Picture: Hopton Parish Council.Flint has fallen from the top of the walls of St Margaret's Ruined Church in Hopton after reports of criminal damage between June 10 and 12. Picture: Hopton Parish Council.

St Margaret's Ruined Church, a 13th century structure in Hopton, suffered from criminal damage some time between June 10 and 12 when people had reportedly walked along its walls, causing flint from the building to fall to the ground.

Stones had also been "gouged out" of graves.

At the time the village's residents expressed shock, with the parish council stating the "tranquillity" of the church had been "shattered by vandals".

Police, however, have had to close the investigation.

Hopton Parish Council say that parts of a gravestone were removed from the grounds of St Margaret's Ruined Church. Picture: Hopton Parish Council.Hopton Parish Council say that parts of a gravestone were removed from the grounds of St Margaret's Ruined Church. Picture: Hopton Parish Council.

A police spokesperson said: "An investigation was conducted into reports of criminal damage at Hopton St Margaret's Ruined Church.

"Officers have visited the site and spoke to the relevant individuals, however it was established that there were no investigative opportunities, no forensics, no witnesses, suspects or other lines of enquiry.

"While no evidential opportunities have been identified - we would always review any new information," the police added.

One month after the vandalism, firefighters rushed to the church following reports a vehicle was on fire under the building.

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Flames had torched the building's wall.

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