A Greenhithe family has been left devastated after callous thieves made off with their van containing £25,000 worth of go-karting equipment.

The silver Mercedes Sprinter van with registration number LX60 OXA was taken from outside the family home in Stonely Crescent in Ingress Park at 2.30am on Tuesday (June 17) and it is believed the van was taken through the Dartford Crossing into Essex.

Mother-of-three Rebecca Lloyd, 35, explained her two sons Alex, nine, and Freddie, four, have been left "devastated" by the thefts because "go-karting is their world".

Mrs Lloyd told News Shopper: "Breaking the news to the boys was just terrible.

"We go to go-karting races every weekend and it is just their world, they are devastated and really upset.

"Alex is just nine and races at British championship level and he has been picked out as one of the young drivers to watch out for this year as one of the up and coming stars.

"He is always on Motors TV and was picked as the one to watch this year.

"He races with drivers who are a little bit older than him and he has had to earn the respect of these older kids.

"Every piece of go-karting equipment we own was in the van. It cannot be sold on because everything has serial numbers on it and it's most probably just going to be dumped.

"We need all the help we get in catching who took the van because our boys are really upset."

The van contained two Project One go-karts, one bambino go-kart, four RPM engines, three suits which included gloves and crash helmets.

Mrs Lloyd added: "It is devastating for all of us.

"Nobody really understands unless you are part of the go-karting world but our weekends always consist of taking the boys to different events, it's a family thing which we all do.

"We just want it back for our sons.

"We have had our garage broken into twice so we thought it would be safer to store all the equipment in the van and then this happens. The van was right next to the house and we thought it would be secure."

A spokesman for Kent Police said: "Kent Police is investigating a theft of a motor vehicle in Greenhithe.

"It is reported that a silver Mercedes Sprinter van was stolen from Stonely Crescent just after 2am on Tuesday, June 17.

"The van contained two black go-karts that are fuelled by petrol and four Honda 160CC engines, a multi-coloured crash helmet, a black crash helmet and clothing."

DC Shaun Ravate, investigating officer, added: "We are carrying out a number of lines of enquiries after it was reported that a van containing go-karting equipment was stolen from Greenhithe.

"I would urge anyone who witnessed this incident or thinks they have seen the stolen vehicle to contact police.

"I would also ask anyone who is approached by someone selling go-karts and equipment and is suspicious about their actions to call the police."

Witnesses or anyone with information is asked to contact DC Shaun Ravate at Kent Police by calling 01474 366081 and quoting crime reference XY/021509/14.