SEVERAL pieces of jewellery were stolen from a house in the New Forest while the occupant was away.

Police investigating the break-in at Fritham, near Lyndhurst, say many of the items stolen in the incident are of "great sentimental value" to the owner.

The burglary occurred between 5pm on August 6 and 9.30am the next day but details have only just been released.

The haul included a blue river pearl necklace, linked with a silver clasp with a floral design, and matching stud earrings, which had been stored in a navy blue drawstring bag.

Thieves also made off with other items including:

A gold brooch and gold safety chain, with a green flash opal surrounded by 12 diamonds, which had been been stored in a red mock-leather box.

A small rose cut diamond ring, with one larger diamond and eight smaller diamonds, with a white gold and platinum ring and setting.

A silver ingot pendant on a silver chain, which had been produced for the Queen’s Silver Jubilee.

A silver Women’s Institute brooch, with a tree design in the middle and the word "President" printed at the bottom.

A gold ring with five royal blue sapphires on a row, with the largest one in the middle.

A gold ring with five rubies, in a similar design to the sapphire ring.

Police have released images of some of the stolen items.

PC Michael Gould said: “We would like people to have a good look at the jewellery and read the descriptions.

“Many of them are of great sentimental value to the victim and some are quite distinctive.

“Do you recognise any of these items? Perhaps you have been offered them for sale? If so, please get in touch.

“We would also like to hear from anyone who was in the Fritham area that night, and noticed something that they felt was suspicious or looked out of place.”

Anyone with information can call police on 101, quoting the crime reference number 44190279715. Alternatively they can ring Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.