Valuable accordions stolen from collector in Comber
Accordions thought to be worth several hundred thousand pounds have been stolen from a collector in County Down.
Ken Hopkins, who has one of the largest collections of accordions in the world, was visited by two men on 4 August who said they wanted to buy one for their grandfather.
They arranged to meet him in west Belfast a week later but failed to show up.
When Mr Hopkins returned home to Comber he discovered 30 instruments were gone.
The thieves had also taken a motor home and jewellery.
Mr Hopkins said: "They phoned me to say they were running behind time, but they didn't turn up, but at the same time they were clearing my house out.
"They got the keys to the motor home, filled it up with accordions and away they went."
He said he realised what had happened when he returned home to find the house ransacked.
"Those accordions were quite rare and quite valuable. They were the cream of my collection and I think they might have been stolen to order. Some of them were one-offs, made for certain people."
Although the 1950s accordions were stolen in County Down, police believe the instruments could be offered for sale anywhere in Northern Ireland or further afield.
They have appealed for the public's help.
A police spokesperson said: "These items are rare and specialised. They are not the sort of thing you would normally see in a pawn shop or being offered for sale door to door or even on web sites.
"You would not pay a couple of hundred pounds for an instrument like this and anyone who wanted one knows what they are looking for and knows a reputable seller.
"We would appeal to anyone who has information on the whereabouts of these instruments, or is offered something similar for sale in suspicious circumstances, to contact police."
Police believe the Fiat Ducato white six-berth motor home, registration W91 PVM, may have been driven out of Northern Ireland.