POLICE are stepping up patrols in Wirral after a family home was burgled in the middle of the afternoon as the occupants were inside.

Four offenders targeted the house in Balmoral Grove, Prenton at 2.30pm yesterday, Thursday.

They stole a safe from a bedroom containing a large amount of cash as well as family jewellery.

The family, who were in an upstairs room, were not threatened or hurt but were left extremely distressed.

The offenders fled the scene in a silver-coloured car.

Detective Inspector Rachel Wilson from Wirral CID said: "We believe these offenders knew, or strongly suspected, that there was a large amount of cash at the premises and that is why they targeted it.

"They knocked at the front door first before forcing it open with a crow bar and thoroughly searching the house.

"Thankfully the occupants stayed in an upstairs room and they were not threatened or harmed, however both were understandably very upset and shaken.

"Crimes like this can have a devastating impact on the victims and I would like to reassure local residents that everything possible is being done to find these offenders and bring them to justice.

"We are pursuing numerous positive lines of enquiry and would urge anyone who witnessed the crime taking place or anything suspicious on the estate on Thursday, or in the days and weeks before, to please contact my team on 0151 777 2264 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111."