ONE thousand litres of heating oil have been stolen from a Badsey agricultural business.

Thieves broke the locks off two large tanks and siphoned the oil, valued at about £1,000, between 6pm on February 14 and 1pm on February 15 from EC Drummond and Sons on Badsey Fields Lane in the village near Evesham.

The tanks, which can hold up to 6,000 litres of oil between them, are used to heat glasshouses which are used to grow fruit including strawberries during the cold winter months.

Police are appealing for witnesses to the theft, after a white transit van was seen in the area, and are studying CCTV footage.

Marin Marinov, manager of EC Drummond and Sons, said the theft had forced him to take action to improve security.

“How could these people come here to steal?” he said. “We have decided to put gates on the front of the farm and we are updating our cameras and installing lights so that if it happens again we can recognise the number plate.

“They must have had big tanks on the back of the transit [van].

They left us a quarter of a tank.

We will have to buy more fuel and top it up.”

The 37-year-old said the business was hit by thieves last September at their sister site in Wickhamford, near Broadway, but they had not reported it to the police.

“They took the tractor forks,” he said. “We’ve got people [coming in and] running around looking for scrap metal. Sometimes we just don’t bother to report it to the police. It’s just annoying.”

Toby Shergold, West Mercia Police spokesman, said: “Anyone who witnessed any suspicious activity should contact police and if anyone saw a white van we would like to hear from them.”

Anyone with information should call police on 101 quoting incident number 0363S 150213.