AUDACIOUS thieves smashed a front door and burgled a house in broad daylight and on a busy main road.

The owner returned to find the door broken and thousands of pounds of property stolen – including jewellery, a games console and golf clubs.

The house is in Coggeshall Road, Braintree, near the junction with Bartram Avenue North.

The owner, who did not wish to be identified, said he had returned home with his 18-month-old son and found glass from the front door on the floor.

He then found a jewellery box, clothes and bags had been pulled out of place.

His wife’s bracelets and diamond engagement ring and earrings were taken, along with his Christmas present, an Xbox, and golf clubs.

The man, who works as an estates manager, said: “The shocking thing is it happened in the daytime on a main road on a busy road.”

He said police had told him the burglars may have knocked on multiple doors in the street to find houses where no one was home.

The homeowner said the invasion of privacy and the stress of dealing with the aftermath had been the worst aspect.

He said: “The emotional stress you go through, that will be with you forever.”

Forensic tests and house-tohouse inquiries have been carried out by police.

Det Con Gemma Crowson, of Essex Police, said: “This couple had been out all day, returning to find their front door smashed in.

“We would hope motorists and nearby residents saw this property being broken into.

“These owners have been left shocked by what has happened to them.

“We want to identify who broke into their home, arrest them and take them off the streets.

“No doubt, they are serial burglars and so have the potential to target other homes in the area.”

An Essex Police spokesman added: “Residents should always call police straight away if they have any doubts or concerns about people calling at their home.”

The raid happened between 8am and 6pm last Tuesday and anyone with information should call Braintree police on 101 or Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555111.