A BRAINTREE BMX ace is devastated after his prized £1,800 bike was stolen from outside a pal’s house just days after Christmas.

William Irving’s custom-built BMX was in the back of a friend’s car in Halstead when crooks struck in the early hours of December 28.

The thieves escaped with the Nissan Almera and the bike.

Mr Irving, 27, of Panfield Lane, was going to take the bike to an event in Liverpool the next day but instead woke up to find both his friend’s car and his treasured BMX had vanished.

He has been BMX-ing for the last 15 years and even rode competitively until he was 18.

Mr Irving said: “My whole life is that bike and now I feel like I don’t even want to ride any more.

“I only bought the bike six months ago.

“I couldn’t believe they’d stolen it – I didn’t hear anything.

“It’s devastating. I feel kind of lost without it. I can’t really sleep – it’s always on my mind.

“Even if I get another bike I won’t be happy.”

The BMX was unique and built with very rare, specialist, high-end parts. The frame alone cost a whopping £500.

Mr Irving has put pictures of the bike on social media in a bid to trace it.

He said: “I’ve never had a bike stolen.

“But you can’t just sell that bike – they’d be stupid to try and sell it.

“I know a lot of people in BMX-ing and now they know about it.

“The police are involved but they don’t seem to care.

“I am getting a lot of help from the community though, which does give me hope.”

The car and black and gold-coloured BMX were stolen some time between midnight and 5am on December 28.

A police spokesman said: “Victims are at the heart of all we do at Essex Police and our officers work tirelessly to get the right outcome for those who have been targeted by criminals.

“We are always disappointed to hear that a victim of crime is dissatisfied with the service provided by the force.

“We would encourage anyone who is unhappy with our service to complain which can be done online at essex.police.uk.”