DIY SOS: Builder who had tools stolen from van during filming given new equipment

A builder whose tools were stolen from his van as he helped on a DIY SOS project has been given £500 worth of new equipment.

Caroline Fried from PROTEC Direct hands over tools to Brett Bradford
Caroline Fried from PROTEC Direct hands over tools to Brett Bradford

Brett Bradford, aged 57, was working on a driveway at a home in West Bromwich for the BBC TV programme when thieves struck.

The team, led by presenter Nick Knowles, was renovating the home of Sandra Chambers, who lost her daughter Crystal.

Nick Knowles appealed for help after the van was broken into in West Bromwich

Crystal died in October 2015 at the age of 32 after being diagnosed with terminal cancer just weeks before, leaving behind her two children Deago, nine, and Ameira, three.

Without home insurance, or owning a home, the youngsters were left in the care of Crystal’s mother, Sandra.

They moved in with Sandra and her 19-year-old son, Ziggy, in the cramped house in Livingstone Road.

Hundreds of kind tradespeople, including Brett, gave up their time to help transform the property and make it more suitable for the family’s needs.

The DIY SOS team in West Bromwich

But on the final day of work, Brett was left devastated after thieves broke into his van and cleared it.

Yesterday, workers from Wednesbury PROTEC Direct gave him £500 worth of new tools.

He said: “We were absolutely blown away with the response. So many people came forward with offers of help.”

Brett, who runs Allscapes Design and Build, based in Brookside, Telford, said: “I did the Telford build and they asked me to step in last minute to do the driveway.

“I love doing it anyway and there is a fantastic atmosphere.

“The van was literally parked on the street where we were filming and doing the makeover, about 100 yards away.

“I could see it from where we were but when you’re doing a driveway you’re bending down. We parked it at about 9am we went to get some tools and the van was emptied.

“We had to borrow tools from other people to get the job finished.

“You could have knocked me down with a sledgehammer, I was just so deflated.

“As well, some of the tools had been Christmas presents from my grand-daughter and you can replace the tools but they aren’t the same.”

Immediately after the theft, Nick Knowles took to social media to appeal for help for Brett, and another builder who was also affected by the theft.

An estimated £4,000 worth of tools were stolen.

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