MEMBERS of Romsey's Abbey United Reformed Church said they are grateful to the police after an investigation was launched because of a break-in.

Officers are looking into the incident which happened between 2pm on May 29 and 9am on May 30.

Despite nothing being stolen, Reverend Mike Perrott said there was "quite a mess" after all of the church's drawers and cupboards were emptied.

Revd Perrott said: "The break-in was discovered by our church officer, Angela Wolfe, on the morning of Wednesday 30th. Some months earlier, the church had taken the decision to keep the great oak front doors of the church open to enable people to look through the inner glass doors at the beautiful, historic church interior.

"It was these glass doors that had been forced open to gain access.

"There was no damage to the church, but there was quite a mess to clear up over the ensuing days.

"We are not a church that has valuable items of gold or silver, and nothing seems to have been stolen."

Hampshire Constabulary added in a statement: "We are investigating a burglarly which took place at a church in Romsey.

"An untidy search was carried out inside the building.

"Anyone who witnessed the incident, or has any information, is asked to contact police on 101 quoting 44180200072."

Revd Perrott also said that the oak doors would now be closed throughout the evenings after the burglary.

He added: "We are grateful to the police who, while coping with diminished resources, spent some hours at the church looking.

"Sadly, now the heavy oak doors of the church will need to be closed overnight again until security measures can be reconsidered.

"How the selfish actions of one or two people will affect the enjoyment and quality of life for the majority!"