A 72-year-old builder says he is “devastated” after thieves stole his van and a number of power tools.
In total, £3,000 worth of tools and a 2010 white Ford Transit were taken last Wednesday (May 17) from Maidstone Road in Nettlestead Green.
Sarah Kyne says her father, Michael Kyne, was heading out to a job in Brixton when he noticed that his van was gone.
“He does extensions, decorating, any sort of building work. At the moment he has been putting windows in,” she told KentOnline.
“My dad went out to go to work, he usually leaves really early and thought he might have left it in the nearby lay-by.
“He went to look and it wasn’t there – then he realised it had been stolen.”
The family believe the van was taken some time between 2am and 5am.
Michael, 72, has been working in the construction industry all his life – first starting out at age 15 working for others and then eventually going on to run his own company.
“I just feel really sorry for him,” Sarah added. “Obviously he’s slowed down a bit now and has off periods, but he still works. He loves it and has done it all his life.
“That van had his whole life's collection of tools. The power tools he renews, but some of the hand tools he has had for years.
“He’s absolutely devastated. He said to me that it feels like a nightmare and that he will wake up any minute.”
Sarah posted a plea on Facebook, asking anyone who had potentially seen or knows where the items are to get in contact.
‘That van had his whole life's collection of tools...’
The family believes that the thieves went through Yalding, Benover, Collier Street and then Horsmonden.
So far they have been able to recover a couple of the stolen items on the same day.
She said: “I had someone message to say they might have his ladders, which we went and collected from a farm.
“Then we got another call in the afternoon saying there was loads of decorating stuff dumped in a lay-by.
“Someone on a local Facebook group was complaining about fly-tipping and we found out it was some of his bits.
“The council were already there and we arrived just in time as they were about to clear it.
“They let us salvage out what we could – it was awful – some of it was smashed up.
“There were his screwdrivers, chisels, paint brushes and a lot of plaster that had split.”
Despite not having found the vehicle yet, Sarah says that she would like to thank the public for their help so far.
“The thieves must have known it was a working van with tools in,” she said.
‘I’m just hoping it’s going to turn up somewhere.’
“Maybe they saw him loading stuff in it, I don’t know. I’m just hoping it’s going to turn up somewhere.”
A spokesman from the police confirmed officers are investigating the theft which happened overnight, between May 16 and 17 and that several of the stolen items had been found fly-tipped in Furnace Lane, Horsmonden.
Enquires are ongoing and anyone with information which may assist the investigation should contact Kent Police on 01622 604100, quoting reference 46/87418/23.