HOMEOWNERS have been warned to lock up their logs after the price of firewood rose to £200 per tonne.

The Country Land and Business Association, a rural interest group, said firewood is now a valuable commodity and becoming an increasingly attractive target for thieves.

CLA Yorkshire regional director Dorothy Fairburn said: “For some time now, heating oil has been a popular target for thieves but we are concerned that logs are becoming an increasingly attractive proposition.

“Firewood has been rising in price for several years and the thieves are well aware of it. There is a tidy profit to be made, so householders need to make sure that they aren’t the losers.

“We are putting out the warning now because many people are starting to take delivery for the winter.

“Householders should be at home when the logs arrive and get them safely stored out of sight or choose suppliers who will unload and stack them where they will not be visible.

The CLA has also warned businesses that sell firewood and logs to take extra security precautions or risk losing out to thieves and opportunists.

The organisation has advised anyone who is offered logs, especially at a cheap rate, to check out where they have come from and to be cautious.

Miss Fairburn added: “If a deal seems too good to be true, it probably is. If the seller appears dubious in any way, you should refuse to buy and report the incident to the police.”