THIEVES who infiltrated the Manorlands hospice car park to steal from a van have been branded “the lowest of the low”.

Worth Valley politicians this week strongly condemned miscreants who sneaked into the grounds and stole keys from an electrician's van.

They say the raiders could just as easily have broken into cars used by people visiting dying relatives at the highly-respected facility.

Keighley MP Kris Hopkins said: “It is vitally important these poor excuses for human beings are apprehended, named, shamed and punished in the courts.”

The shocking incident came last Thursday morning after the electrician parked his van while working at Manorlands.

Staff believe the thieves may have returned later with the intention of stealing the man’s tools, but were scared off by a dog in the vehicle.

Police this week appealed for information about two men filmed by a Manorlands CCTV camera pulling up in front of the van just after 9am.

One man pulls up the hood on his jacket and glances around before opening the van doors, while his partner enters from the other side and rummages around inside.

The car is seen again on CCTV about 20 minutes later pulling up next to the van, then driving off.

Sue Owlett, head of support services at the Sue Ryder-run hospice, said although stone flags were stolen four years ago and other items go missing from the grounds from time to time, she could not recall any previous car break-ins.

She said: “Understandably, we are very upset that as a hospice this could happen. This leaves families, patients and staff feeling stressed and more vulnerable than usual.

“We have CCTV to ensure patient, staff and visitor safety is paramount.”

Mr Hopkins said it was almost beyond comprehension anyone would trespass into the Manorlands grounds and seek to pilfer from staff and relatives.

He added: “Anyone with any information on who the thieves might be have a duty to pass this information on to the police without delay.”

District councillor Glen Miller, a keen supporter of the hospice, described the thieves as "reprobates".

He said: “It’s pretty low and callous. They should look inside themselves and think what sort of human being would do this sort of thing.”

Fellow Worth Valley ward councillor, Rebecca Poulsen, contrasted the 1,000 people who took part in the weekend’s Keighley BigK 10k with the “truly shocking” behaviour of the thieves.

She said: “They’re the lowest of the low. People give up Mother’s Day to raise funds, often in memory of loved ones. The difference is astounding – a different mentality.”

Oxenhope Parish Council chairman, Cllr Tony Maw, said there had been a handful of recent thefts from vehicles in Oxenhope, but for it to happen at Manorlands was "appalling".

Inspector Alan Rhees-Cooper, who leads the Keighley Area Neighbourhood Team, said police will look in detail at the CCTV footage to try and identify the suspects and the vehicle that was used.

He said: “While we are aware of a number of recent thefts from motor vehicles in Oxenhope, this is believed to be the first that has occurred this year at this particular location.”

Anyone with information about the incident is asked to call police at Keighley on 101, quoting crime reference 13160098246, or report anonymously to Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.