CALLOUS thieves have stolen the wheels from a South Tyneside charity store’s delivery van.
The driver of the Sue Ryder van parked it in Orwell Close, Biddick Hall, South Shields, on Sunday afternoon.
But on Monday morning when he went to drive it to work the front wheels were missing.
The theft came just days before the launch of new stock campaign, which starts today, by the charity shop, in Prince Edward Road, the Nook, South Shields.
Bosses from the charity – which provides care for people with life-changing illnesses – say it is costing them more than £1,000 to replace the wheels and hire a new van.
Store manager Yvonne Butler said: “The van is out of action.
“Is is costing us about £1,000 to get it fixed, and all the time we can’t use it we’re having to pay to hire a van.
“It is money that we can’t afford.
“I don’t know why anyone would do this, the van is clearly marked with Sue Ryder on the side – whoever did this is the lowest of the low.” Ray Hall, Sue Ryder area manager, said: “We are just preparing to launch our May campaign and the van is crucial for collecting stock in the area.
“As a charity we rely on the generous donations from our supporters so we can turn the items into incredible care for people with life-changing illness. If businesses have any garage or secure lock-up for the van they are willing to donate, please contact the Sue Ryder shop in South Shields.”
Police are now looking at CCTV footage from the surrounding streets.
Neighbourhood Inspector Peter Sutton said: “This is a crime against an organisation which sets out to benefit others, and the thieves will have known that because the van was branded.’’
Anyone with information on the theft is asked to contact police on 101 ext 69191 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111. To donate to Sue Ryder, call 454 0862 or drop items into the shop in Prince Edward Road.
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