A TREASURED canoe stolen from a Worcester family was found drifting and damaged after being abandoned in a city canal.

Stephen Goodchild of Merriman's Hill in Worcester was reunited with the 15ft canoe on Tuesday following an appeal to recover the boat which had brought joy to his grandchildren.

The canoe, stolen while Mr Goodchild and his wife were away on a narrowboat holiday, was recovered with a hole in it and scratches on the hull.

We previously reported how the canoe, a Mobile Adventure Melody, was stolen from their garden overnight between Friday, July 17 and Saturday, July 18.

The 64-year-old grandfather of five said on Tuesday: "It was found floating on the canal near Wickes this morning and people knocked on our door to tell us, having seen the press articles.

"We went and recovered it. The thieves had tried to disguise it by painting it silver grey. There is additional damage, scratches to the hull and a hole in the gunwale."

The thieves had also left paddles in the canoe.

The family reported the theft to West Mercia Police. Mr Goodchild told the Worcester News at the time: "The thieves either swam across the canal from the towpath or climbed over railings on the St George’s Road North canal bridge and along the back of two neighbouring gardens.

"Our own paddles were in our cellar, so the thieves either brought their own or used their hands to paddle the canoe away. To carry out the theft obviously it required some planning and means to transport the canoe away from the area.

"We only moved to Worcester last year. Our grandchildren enjoyed using the canoe on the canal and were looking forward to doing so again during the summer holidays."

When they found out about the theft their first reaction was: “How are we going to pick blackberries now?"

The canoe has been in the family for the last 25 years and has travelled with them as they moved from Surrey to Hereford and, more recently, to Worcester. They have used it on the Thames.

The family is now considering investing in CCTV.