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Hebrides News


Police are investigating thefts of domestic heating oil in the Western Isles.


Pensioners, Alex and Margaret Macphee paid over £500 to have their oil tank filled to the brim for the Christmas period.


But a thief siphoned away the lot from a tank outside their house in Nunton, Benbecula.


The couple though the boiler had broken down when the heating went off on Sunday and were “horrified” to discover someone had stolen some 1.1 tonnes of fuel.

Pensioners left in cold on New Year after thieves steal heating oil

4 January 2017

Their son, Donald Macphee, said it was “deplorable“ to think someone was “prowling around” their home.

Mr Macphee said: “Not only did they leave my parents without heat and hot water on the first of January, our neighbour who is ill had hers taken before the 25th and left her with no heating on Christmas Day. It is beyond belief.”

Mr Macphee, who lives in the same village, explained the fuel tank was topped up to 1200 litres and the couple must only have used 100 litres maximum in the last three weeks, leaving 1,100 litres or over one tonne.

Meanwhile, thieves also struck across the causeway in nearby South Uist where a young family have been targeted.

The household - including two toddlers - has to wait two days to get a fresh delivery of oil.

Police Scotland confirmed said they are investigating the alleged theft of domestic heating fuel theft in the areas.

A spokeswoman said reports have been received by Benbecula police.

Islanders are advised to “secure oil tanks” against opportunist thieves, she added.

Police appealed for anyone with information over the recent thefts to contact police on 101.


Alternatively, people can call Crimestoppers on 0800 555111 if they wish to remain anonymous.