Widow’s anguish as raiders steal rings

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had been scattered. Norman, who used to own cab firm Abbey Taxis, passed away, aged 76, in 2009.

Anne said: “They must have come over his ashes, I spread them all round this little stone that had two little puppy dogs on top that he painted.

“I was upset at first but now I’m angry, so sad and angry. It was his wedding ring going missing which hurt me more than anything. They’ve taken things that mean something to me. How can they do something like this? I’m not frightened of them, I just wish they’d come back again, because I will be waiting.”

Also in the boxes was a watch belonging to Norman, a photo of the couple together and letters he sent to Anne, as well as sentimental items such as a pound coin belonging to her late father, Bernard.

“When my father died in 1987, my mum found a pound coin at the bottom of his wardrobe, and gave it to me - other people might not care, but it’s very sentimental to me.

“There was so much I used to keep,” Anne said.

Anne, aged 65, said she was gardening with her daughter at her 92-year-old mother’s home nearby when a neighbour phoned with news of the burglary on Sunday afternoon.

“The police were already there,” she said. “The burglars had smashed through the patio door.

“They were absolutely determined to get in, another neighbour heard the glass smashing.

“They’ve gone through the lounge, came through into my hall and gone in the bedroom.

“They went through my drawers. There were two jewellery boxes inside and they’ve taken them.”

Norman’s wedding ring was a plain gold band, while Anne’s engagement ring was inlaid with a sapphire and a diamond.

The thieves also took a gold bangle given to Anne by her first husband, Guy, whom she divorced in 1981.

“The bangle was inscribed on the inside with something like ‘To my darling Anne, from Guy’,” she said.

n Anyone with information about the incident should call police on 0114 2202020