THIEVES have made off with thousands of pounds worth of tools in a spate of thefts across West Oxfordshire.

Between October 7 and November 21, offenders have stolen chainsaws, leaf blowers, hedge trimmers, lawn mowers, fuel and radios in 17 separate swipes. On the first occasion, offenders forced entry to a van in Woodstock Road, Witney, and stole a leaf blower, chainsaw and hedge trimmer.

Between October 24 and October 25, thieves struck three times in Long Hanborough, taking three cordless drills and other power tools.

Since then, more than six drills, three leaf blowers, three hedge trimmers, a strimmer, a lawn mower, two radios, a disc cutter, a laser level tool, a ladder, a toolbox, batteries, five chain saws, four saws, fuel, drills, a ladder, a toolbox and three batteries, a generator, a site surveying laser and three steel saws have been taken in thefts from properties in areas from Carterton to Chipping Norton.

Most recently, offenders forced entry to a shed in Swinbrook, near Burford, between 5.15pm last Wednesday and 8am on Thursday. On site they damaged a window of a van from which they stole tools and stole saws from inside a shed.

Thames Valley Police have reminded people to keep farm yard gates, vans and cars closed and locked.