VANDALS stole equipment from a hobby club’s shed and smashed up model boats before throwing the broken parts into a pond.

The thieves damaged the lock to get into North West Scale Model Boat Club’s concrete shed besides its leased pond in Squirrel Lane, Horwich.

Club member Christine Holden posted on Facebook: “They stole five strimmers, a petrol lawnmower, some waders and other items.

“They also smashed up one of our elderly member’s model boats that took months to build and threw it onto the pond. Over £1,000 worth of stuff nicked and ruined.”

Friday’s burglary happened two days before the club’s annual bring and buy sale and model display at Aspull Royal British Legion, where its monthly meetings are held.

The club, whose members sail on Wednesdays and Sundays, shares the United Utilities-owned pond with Greenfields Fishing Club.

Carol Fryer said on Facebook: “I know how hard everyone has worked to get these items, and the boat is irreplaceable.”