THIEVES have stolen thousands of pounds worth of equipment from a charity which helps people with disabilities.

A gamekeeper’s shed at Enham Trust was broken in to on Thursday last week with around £10,000 worth of machinery taken.

Around 20 pieces of equipment were snatched including strimmers, hedge cutters, chainsaws and leaf blowers.

The trust says the theft has had a huge impact on the support it provides through its Gardening Social Enterprise.

The enterprise provides people with disabilities with work opportunities through its gardening team.

Not only will the trust struggle to replace the equipment due to the cost, there has also been a huge personal impact.

Nigel Sully, head of Gardening Social Enterprise, said: “As a social enterprise, we are a not-for-profit organisation, providing general gardening services to Andover residents on a non-for-profit basis, which in turn provides employment opportunities to those who may have a disability or employment support need.

“The impact of this break in obviously hits us financially but more so on a personal level. My team has been deeply affected by this, they can’t understand why someone would do this to an organisation such as Enham Trust, that supports so many vulnerable people.

“ I would like the perpetrators to understand the real impact this has had on the enterprise, and the disabled people here. If they were to come here and actually understand what it is we are trying to achieve, they perhaps would think twice.

“Machinery can be replaced but it takes time to rebuild confidence and morale when these things happen.”

Trust chief executive Heath Gunn has urged people to get in touch if they are offered any equipment around Andover.

Hampshire police has said anyone with information about the theft should call 101, quoting 44190108330.