A GANG of thieves stole a minibus from a nursery school as well as laptops and cameras in a raid.

Kiddiwinks Day Nursery in Worsthorne had its silver Renault Trafic van, which is emblazoned with the school’s logo, stolen from outside the building by thieves who snatched the keys after breaking into the nursery.

Five laptops and five cameras were also taken from the business in Old Hall Square.

Within an hour of the burglary, Rockwood Nursery School, in Kingsland Road, was raided after the thieves smashed their way in through a window and stole £100 in petty cash.

The nursery has been forced to shut temporarily while police carry out an investigation. Officers are linking the break-ins.

Mum Catherine Smith, 33, from Worsthorne, said: “My three-year-old boy goes to Kiddiwinks and I find the burglary very sad. It’s such a shame.

“The van gives the nursery some independence. They use it for regular trips out.

“Little children like their routines and it’s not fair on them not to be able to go to the regular things they like so much.

“I just hope the nursery get it back or get it replaced.”

Faith Stringer, headteacher of Rockwood Nursery School, said: “We are disappointed and saddened that our school has been broken into.

“The police need to carry out their investigations and the buildings must remain closed until these are complete.

“We want to avoid disruption for parents and children and will work with the police to get the school open as quickly as possible.

“We will keep parents informed via our website, Twitter and our text messaging system.”

A Lancashire Police spokeswoman said: “Anyone who has been offered any of these items, or knows anything about the incidents, should call police on 101.”

Kiddiwinks was broken into between 6pm and 8pm on Monday and Rockwood was burgled at 7.15pm on the same night.