A grandmother has made a heartfelt plea to the thieves who stole her mobility scooter in broad daylight while she was at bingo.

Liz Brown, 72, says the scooter acts as a lifeline for her and without it her independence has been taken away. It was taken from outside the Opera Bingo hall in Denton Street, Carlisle, on Saturday between 1pm and 3.30pm.

The theft has left Mrs Brown, who has three children and 12 grandchildren, with no other means of transport. She’s now having to rely on the goodwill of her family to get around.

“They might as well have chopped my legs off,” she said.

Mrs Brown, who lives in Denton Holme, has needed to use the scooter for 11 years since her husband passed away. She suffers from a number of issues with her leg after she was run over by a motorbike 30 years ago and battles with osteomyelitis, an inflammation of the bone.

It means that the pensioner cannot walk very far. She is also recovering from a recent knee replacement.

“I can’t carry anything. I went everywhere with my scooter,” Mrs Brown added.

“I always left it outside the bingo, I couldn’t believe it when it was gone. When I came out and noticed it was gone there was a police van driving past and someone helped me flag it down. The police officer even brought me home. I use it to go into town, to go to the shops and I go to the hospital on it as well.”

The scooter is described as being navy blue and made by Invacare.

It’s worth about £1,600 and was donated to Mrs Brown around three years ago through the RAF Benevolent Fund. During her time serving in the force she worked as an air defence operator and a clerk typist.

If the scooter is not returned then Mrs Brown admits that she doesn’t know if she’ll be able to get another one.

Speaking directly to those who carried out the theft, Mrs Brown said: “Please let me have it back.”

Anyone with information should contact police on 101.