Eden Project: Couple sentenced for double burglary

Published
image captionThe Eden Project's biodomes housing a tropical rainforest

A couple who broke into the Eden Project on two occasions by cutting through one of the biomes have been given suspended sentences.

Roxanne Bamber and Nathan Watson, both from Lancashire, admitted burglary and theft at Truro Crown Court.

The pair caused more than £25,000 worth of damage to the Cornwall tourist attraction in February and March 2020.

The court heard Bamber and Watson had deliberately targeted the site because of its remote location.

Prosecutor Ian Graham said the pair used a sharp tool "to cut their way into a biome" which was linked to a cafe and another biome.

CCTV footage showed the pair rifling through offices after breaking their way in, as well as climbing a 30ft (9.1m) platform to steal a large TV, using cut ropes to lower it to the ground.

Mr Graham said the damaged air filled bubble cost £19,200 for a single panel, with further damage caused by the pair, including stolen clothes, amounting to an extra £6,200.

'Rock bottom'

The couple were caught when police stopped their car on the M5 at Cullompton, Devon and noticed the huge TV.

Further stolen goods from the Eden Project, including clothes Watson was wearing, were found in the car and in vehicles back at their homes in Lancashire.

The court was told the pair had reached "rock bottom" at the time and were living in the car touring Wales and Cornwall.

Judge John Trevaskis told them: "The harm you caused by your offending is difficult to exaggerate.

"The extent of damage caused to the Eden Project was substantial and it is money they will never get back from you."

Watson was sentenced to two years in jail and Bamber for 16 months, with both sentences suspended for two years.

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