29/09/2006

Lowry paintings stolen in art gallery raid

Fifteen paintings, including three works by Manchester-born artist LS Lowry have been stolen in a raid at a newly-opened art gallery.

The raid at the Clark Art Gallery in Hale, Greater Manchester, took place around 1am on Wednesday morning.

Greater Manchester Police said that three men forced their way into the gallery by using a drain cover to smash a front window and stole the paintings.

They were then seen to drive away from the gallery in a dark-coloured vehicle.

The men are described as being aged between 18-23-years-old, 5ft 9in - 6ft tall, of athletic build and were wearing dark-coloured clothes and face coverings.

No-one was in the gallery at the time the robbery took place.

The paintings that were stolen were:

  • LS Lowry's 'Industrial Scene', 'Industrial Scene with Figures' and 'Two Women and Children'


  • Helen Bradley's 'Floating with Great Aunt Jane in the Void' and 'The last of the Sun in the Grange in Barrowdale'


  • Arthur Delaney's 'St Annes Square'


  • Mary Fedden's 'Still Life With Fruit and Wine'


  • Terry Frost's 'Red Wedge'


  • Alan Lowndes' 'Fishing Boats'


  • Donald McIntyre's 'Collioure' and 'Table Top'


  • Fred Yates' 'Brighton Beach' and 'Corousels, Brighton'


Bill Clark, the owner of the gallery, and his insurers have offered a £25,000 reward for information leading to the return of the paintings and subsequent arrest and conviction of the people responsible.

Mr Clark said: "It is devastating to have this happen after one week's trading. The thieves have targeted paintings and drawings by LS Lowry, Helen Bradley and Sir Terry Frost. I can't understand how they are going to sell them on as they are all very well known works."

Detective Constable Neil Rothwell from Trafford CID said: "We are keen to speak to anyone who may have any further information about the whereabouts of these paintings. They are all extremely distinctive paintings and it is likely that the offenders may approach known dealers to sell them."

Anyone with any information is asked to contact Stretford CID on: 0161 856 7672 or Crimestoppers anonymously on: 0800 555 111.

(KMcA/EF)

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