A MAN was left devastated after his prize collection of old British bank notes and coins were stolen by callous thieves.

Police are now appealing for members of the public to come forward if they have seen any of the distinctive currency.

Crooks stole the collection from the home of the 57-year-old disabled man in Pitsea in May this year.

They helped themselves to the haul which included, two siler dollars dated between 1887 and 1889 and 1921, a large collection of British coins which are now out of circulation ranging from half pennies to crowns, each of which were in clear plastic envelopes.

The collection also included a selection of British bank notes, which are out of circulation, each were individually in clear plastic wallets but were all held together in a blue A4 folder.

Thieves also helped themselves to two “white five pound notes”, which are much larger than today’s bank notes and are often used on television in historical dramas.

Police are probing the theft but want to hear from anyone who is offered the notes for sale or spots them.
Investigating officer PC Susan Payne of the Basildon Neighbourhood Crime Team said: “This collection had been carefully amassed over a 30- year period.

“It was a prized possession full of sentimental value that far outweighs the monetary cost.

“The victim is physically disabled and has been preyed upon because of their disability.

“They have been left devastated at the collection’s loss and also in the manner at which it has been taken.”

Anyone with information about the theft , which happened on May 31, or the whereabouts of the currency can contact PC Payne at Basildon on 101.

A 44-year-old man Basildon has been arrested in connection with fraud and theft offences. He remains on bail until August while police continue to investigate.