Dover: "Arsenic Coated" Blocks Stolen

Police say a thousand wooden floor blocks stolen from a Kent visitor attraction could be a health hazard.

It is thought the 6in wood cubes were taken from the Dover Western Heights tunnels sometime between Tuesday and Friday of last night.

Now it has emerged that the 100-year-old blocks may be coated with an arsenic preservative which was a typical way of treating wood in Victoria times.

They could cause health problems for anyone who comes into contact with them, particularly if they are burned as fuel, police have warned.

Two suspects were seen on 27 February at 11am and one of them was a woman. She is described as in her 20s, about 5ft 2ins tall, medium build with black hair and a blue top. She was carrying a large rucksack.

Inspector Guy Thompson of Kent Police said: "This is a heritage crime where these blocks are more than 100 years old.

"It would have taken several trips to remove so many blocks so we're appealing to anyone who may have seen suspicious behaviour in the area of Military Road over a period of time.

"Our main concern at the moment is to alert those who may come into contact with the flooring that they could be a health hazard, especially if burned as fuel.

"Dealers, home renovators, collectors and the suspects themselves need to be aware of the potential danger.''