THE HUNT is on for a thief who has stolen thousands of pounds from a Hampshire bank.

Police are looking for a woman after reports that £5,000 in cash was stolen from Barclays Bank, in Shirley, shortly after a customer withdrew the money this lunchtime.

However, it is understood that there could be as much as £10,000 in the bag, which was momentarily left on a chair inside the Shirley Road bank while the customer spoke with staff at the counter.

Officer quickly launched a search for a woman in connection with the theft, which happened around 12.40pm.

She is described as slim, in her 20s, with blonde hair which was in a ponytail. She was wearing black three-quarter-length trousers, a black vest and blue trainers.

Anyone with information should contact Shirley police on 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.