TWO pubs trading on the edge of Rombalds Moor have had valuable outdoor furniture stolen in a series of brazen overnight raids.

Thieves looted almost all the brown, wicker-type furniture from outside The Cow and Calf in Hangingstone Road in two overnight raids last week.

Thieves also targeted Dick Hudson's in Otley Road, High Eldwick in one raid last week. The pub, popular with walkers, had previously had a piece of the same style of furniture stolen.

Both pubs are part of the same group, Vintage Inns, and have the same style furniture.

Amy Procter, landlady of the Cow and Calf pub and hotel appealed to Ilkley residents to help them catch the thieves, saying the cost of replacing the furniture would fall on herself.

She said: "They think it's just a business, but that comes out of our back pockets, if I had to replace it all, it would take thousands. It affects the business."

Police visited the pub, searched for evidence left by the thieves, and reviewed CCTV from around the time of the theft, believed to be at about 3.30am.

It is believed the thieves moved all the furniture out of the view of a CCTV camera to load onto a waiting vehicle, but abandoned one large sofa on its end on the driveway.

There were guests staying at the hotel at the time, and a night manager on duty - but no-one heard the thieves at work.

The theft happened in the early hours of last Friday.

The pub is a popular visitor attraction for many walkers and sightseers who visit the nearby Cow and Calf Rocks and viewpoint overlooking Wharfedale.

Last year, the hotel hosted a Hollywood A-lister when actress Drew Barry and a film crew stayed there while filming on the moor.

James Roulston, bar manager, said: "Hundreds of people sit out there. We don't tie down our furniture. It makes you think twice about leaving stuff outside.

"This is not something you expect to happen around here."

A spokesman for West Yorkshire Police confirmed that officers had visited the Cow and Calf, but said there were no further lines of enquiry at this time.

The pub appealed for anyone with information to get in touch with it by calling (01943) 607335.