Callous thieves have swiped a Welling van used by Greenwich & Bexley Community Hospice to deliver donated goods to its network of shops.

The Ford Transit Luton box van belonging to the Abbey Wood hospice was taken from its retail distribution centre in Welling.

The white van has the hospice's name printed across the side and front of the vehicle.

Betty Sorrell, head of retail at the hospice, said there was "shock all round" when the volunteers realised it had been stolen. The theft could set the charity back £25,000.

The van was used daily by Greenwich & Bexley Community Hospice's retail department to move donated stock between its 17 shops and to collect and deliver furniture to customers across the boroughs of Greenwich and Bexley.

The funds it helped raise were used to support the hospice's patients with life-threatening illnesses, their families and carers.

The van, registration number VN61 ZPR, was taken on March 1 between 5.30pm and 9pm.

Hospice staff last saw the van at 5.30pm. It was later seen being driven down Wickham Lane in Welling after 9pm on the same evening. Police are checking CCTV footage in the area.

The hospice is urging anyone with information to call the police on 101 or call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.