POLICE are investigating a spate of shed and garage break-ins where valuable tools and garden machinery have been stolen. Romsey-based Sergeant Alyson West said most of the burglaries had happened in rural areas over the course of a month.

Fishing tackle worth about £1,000 was stolen from a hut alongside the River Dun near Mottisfont. Meanwhile two petrol chainsaws and two strimmers were taken from a container in the village. Garden tools including a Stihl leaf blower worth £700 and a Makita hedge trimmer valued at £500 have also been stolen from a garage at Shootash. Another rural property has been targeted at Scallows Lane in West Wellow where petrol and a strimmer were stolen from farmland. There was also a failed attempt to break into a garage at East Tytherley. In the latest incident, two hedge trimmers along with two chainsaws were stolen from a metal storage unit at Cedar Nurseries in Sandy Lane at Belbins, last weekend.