Sheffield Museums calls for public help in recovering stolen objects

Twelve objects, some dating back to the 1700s, were taken from Kelham Island Museum during a break-in

The public are being asked for help in recovering items lost during a burglary at Kelham Island Museum on Sunday, 14th May 2023.

Twelve items relating to metalworking in the city, some on loan from Sheffield Assay Office and those featured in displays created by the Ken Hawley Collection Trust, which is based at the museum, are missing.

Among the objects is a display knife made from 14 carat gold, stainless steel and mother of pearl, and a sterling silver coffee pot which dates back to 1773.

Sheffield Museums, the charity which runs Kelham Island Museum, are appealing to the public for help in recovering the stolen items with the help of South Yorkshire Police.

Kim Streets, Chief Executive of Sheffield Museums Trust said the organisation was “deeply saddened” by the break-in, “which appears to have been a carefully planned theft.’

“The historical significance of these items goes far beyond any financial value they hold. They span one of the first objects hallmarked by Sheffield Assay Office to knives made by one of our last Little Mesters, the much-missed Stan Shaw, and are irreplaceable touchstones of Sheffield’s rich heritage.’

“Some of these items are likely to find their way onto the market and are very distinctive.”

Ashley Carson, Assay Master at Sheffield Assay Office said the stolen items had “no real sell on value”, but to Sheffield Museums they “represent a far wider loss and are totally irreplaceable.”