POLICE are investigating 26 non-dwelling burglaries which have taken place in the Lymington area in the past month.

Thieves have raided garages, outhouses and other buildings in Lymington and neighbouring villages, making off with tools and other items.

A 31-year-old man was injured during a break-in at Silver Street in Hordle last Saturday.

He challenged four men who were attempting to break into a shipping container and was hit with a large metal object before the offenders ran off.

Police say the victim suffered bruising to his side but did not need hospital treatment.

The burglary is being linked to a similar incident in Silver Street on the same day. A container was broken into but tools taken from inside were left on the ground and have since been recovered.

A police spokesman said: "We are linking these two burglaries to one that took place in Sway Road, Pennington, between 5pm on March 16 and 8.45am the following day.

"An attempt was made to break into a detached garage. Nothing was stolen."

PCSO Stuart Readhead said: “We believe these three incidents are linked and we’re investigating. We would like to hear from anyone who thinks they have information about what happened.

“Were you in this area at the time? Do you remember seeing anything suspicious? If so, please call 101, quoting 44190056105.”

Police have had 26 reports of non-dwelling burglaries in the Lymington area in the past month, including those which occurred at Silver Street and Sway Road.

The spokesman said: "Some have involved offenders breaking padlocks on garages and outbuildings. In some incidents, items such as tools have been stolen.

"Officers are looking to see what links there are between these incidents.

"We would like to take this opportunity to remind people to check the security of any outbuilding they own."