Thieves raid fisherman's collection

A DEVOTED angler left heartbroken by the theft of his entire collection of fishing gear is today appealing for help in catching the thieves who stole it.

A DEVOTED angler left heartbroken by the theft of his entire collection of fishing gear is today appealing for help in catching the thieves who stole it.

Des Wells has been left devastated by the theft of the equipment, worth £6,500, from the shed at the rear of his Morland Road, Ipswich, home.

Today he appealed to other fishermen to upgrade security around their most valuable gear to avoid having their passion snatched from under them.

The father-of-four said: "They've got to be extra vigilant on what they do with their gear.

"I thought I had a really secure shed. I thought it was well protected.

"But I can't fish now. I used to go two or three nights a week. It's been my life since I was 12 years old."

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Mr Wells, 42, discovered the theft of his fishing gear on Monday. Thieves had broken in to his heavily secured shed either late Sunday night or during the early hours of Monday.

Suffolk police is investigating the theft but neither the Wells family or their neighbours heard the thieves when they struck.

Mr Wells said: "When I saw the mess in the shed I noticed everything had gone. They must have spent hours in there to get all the gear out.

"There had to be more than one guy definitely and they had to do more than one trip."

A keen carp angler who fishes at Ardleigh Reservoir, Mr Wells had built up a valuable collection of fishing gear ranging from six rods, eight reels, tents, and waders to walkie talkies and bank sticks, which hold rods in place at the water's edge.

Some of the rods were personalised with his name while others bore his initials - DFW.

He said: "Everything that I had was so personal."

Now Mr Wells is urging fisherman to be on the lookout for his gear and to take extra precautions to guard them against theft.

He said: "If I can make other people think about putting alarms on their shed they should do so."

Anyone with information about the theft or the whereabouts of the equipment should call Pc James Cassedy at Suffolk Police on 01473 613500 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

N What do you think? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk

Part of the haul the thieves escaped with:

Six custom-made carp rods, four with Des Wells' name on them and two with his initials DFW

Eight reels

Winter tent (green) and summer tent (green)

Stainless steel bank sticks

Canon 35mm camera

Tackle boxes and tackle

Carp sacks

Landing net

Chest waders

Radio

Walkie talkies