A GARDENER says his children are now too scared to sleep after selfish thieves broke into his van and stole his tools, leaving him unable to earn a living.

Scott Cowling, 36, from Skelmersdale Road, Clacton, was left devastated after awaking to find his work vehicle had been targeted by callous crooks overnight.

The heist, which happened between 1am and 1.30am last Tuesday, resulted in his Stihl chainshaw, strimmer, blower, multi-tool arm and hedge cutters being taken.

The loving father’s Alpina short-arm hedge cutter was also stolen during the break-in, in addition to his white Makita radio.

As a result of currently having no tools of his own, Mr Cowling says he has been left wondering and worrying about where his next payday will come from.

Maldon and Burnham Standard:

The landscape gardener added: “The tools that were taken are second-hand, but I know to replace them I am looking at £2,500 to buy them brand-new.

“It has impacted my ability to work completely as but I am now in the process of sorting out a couple of tools so I can at least start to gain an income again.

“I am disgusted that there are thieves out there who are taking away livelihoods from genuine and honest people who just want to earn a living.

“The police are aware and are looking into it but if anyone sees or hears of my stuff being sold anywhere, please let me know.”

Mr Cowling lives with his working partner and their seven children.

He has now said the entire ordeal has had a disconcerting and negative impact on both him and his family.

Mr Cowling said: “This has not only impacted my job, but it has also emotionally affected all of us.

“Our children are now worried at bedtimes because they think the thieves will come back and next time maybe even break into our house.

“I am certainly not going to be the last as there has been so many people posting on social media since my van was broken into about more tools being taken.”

“So, what is going to stop these people?”