Nottingham residents have been asked to be on the watch for thieves removing drainage gully grates from the Bilborough, Wollaton and Radford areas of the city.

More than 35 have been stolen from across the city over the day. The theft of these covers means that deep rainwater drain holes are left uncovered, endangering cyclists and pedestrians and with the potential to cause damage to cars.

Officers at Nottingham City Council think the gully grates are being stolen to be weighed in as scrap metal.

As well as putting the safety of road users at risk, the thefts will cost Nottingham City Council more than £10,000 to replace the stolen gully grates. It also means delays to other road maintenance work while these emergency replacements are carried out.

Cllr Sally Longford, Portfolio Holder for Neighbourhood Services and Local Transport at Nottingham City Council said: “The thieves are putting people at risk as well as causing extra expense for taxpayers as the City Council replaces them. As soon as we are told about missing grates we make every effort to replace them immediately, but with so many being stolen it is very difficult to do the work as quickly as we would like.

We would ask the public to be observant and report any incidents immediately to the Police.”