Sheep graze in a fieldLibrary photo © Tim Scrivener

Sheep rustlers have struck at a west Cumbrian farm, stealing 14 in-lamb ewes.

The sheep, marked with ear tags number UK102197, were taken from a farm at High Harrington in the early hours of 29 April.

Cumbria Constabulary is appealing for anyone who saw or heard anything suspicious to get in touch.

See also: Cumbrian farmers and police join forces to combat rural crime

Anyone who is offered the sheep to buy should also contact Cumbria police on 101, email 101@cumbria.police.uk or telephone Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

According to rural insurer NFU Mutual, rural crime cost Cumbria £700,000 in 2015, a year-on-year rise of 5%. Sheep rustling was among the crimes on the rise.

Meanwhile, police in Northern Ireland are seeking information over the theft of sheep in the Sperrin Mountains.

Twenty-one Blackfaced horned hoggets were stolen from common grazing near Moneyneena, Draperstown, County Derry.

The sheep were well marked in red and were branded.