Kent Police have launched an investigation into the theft of lead from the Chatham Naval Memorial.
The theft is believed to have taken place between 2.50am and 3.30am today.
Acting Chief Inspector Richard Cherry said: "It is really disappointing that metal thieves will stoop so low as to steal the lead from a memorial dedicated to those who lost their lives courageously fighting in two world wars. The matter will be fully investigated in order to identify and bring the perpetrators to justice.
"Kent Police and Medway District has mounted a number of successful operations in recent months to tackle metal thieves and we are committed to keeping up the pressure on those committing such crimes in our communities."
Kent Police have carried out a number of recent operations to tackle the problem of metal theft including working with legitimate local scrap metal yards and local authorities.
Acting Chief Inspector Cherry said: "In the coming weeks and months we will be carrying out regular road checks and checks on scrap metal yards. We will be using automatic number plate recognition to target both vehicles known to carry scrap metal and unregistered waste carriers and we will be using forensic property markers and UV technology to track metal thieves."
Anyone with information is asked to contact Kent Police on 101 quoting reference 04-0094 or call Kent Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 55 111.