A FAMILY’S dream festive holiday turned into a nightmare when they got home to discover they had been burgled.

Graham Watson and his fiancee, Sonia Dockray, were devastated when they stepped into their house after a fortnight in the US and saw it had been raided.

Their sadness was compounded when they realised that treasured images of their seven-month-old daughter, Emma, had been taken.

Thousands of pounds of electrical equipment and jewellery were also stolen from the house in Hawthorn Drive, School Aycliffe, County Durham.

Mr Watson said: “We’ve not slept or eaten much since we’ve got back, one minute I’m angry the next just fed up.

“We’ve lost a lot, but its the DVDs and photos stored on the computer of my baby’s first few seconds that I keep thinking about. I cannot replace them.”

Mr Watson, 48, said that when he entered the house after returning from holiday on January 6, the power was off.

He was followed inside by Ms Dockray, 36, her 12-year-old daughter Jessica, and Emma.

When the power was restored, they switched on the lights and saw their house had been trashed and stripped of belongings.

Christmas gifts for the girls, more than £2,000 cash takings from Mr Watson’s mini coach business, and expensive and sentimental jewellery was stolen.

A lot of electrical equipment had also been taken, including 42in and 32in screen televisions, PS3, Nintendo Wii and DS consoles and games, a Samsung home theatre sound bar, an Apple Mac computer and two laptops.

Mr Watson said: “I couldn’t believe what I was seeing – there was total and absolute devastation.

“I hope the police find who took our belongings, but I don’t know if I’d want it back after those scumbags have had their hands on it.

“More than anything, I want the DVDs and computer with hundreds of pictures of my baby and a video of the first seconds of her life back.

“The emotional cost is even greater than the financial.”

After hearing of the burglary, a neighbour reported seeing people in a car acting suspiciously on December 29.

It is thought the burglary was committed on January 1, as a satellite receiver was disconnected then, though it may have been raided more than once.

Anyone with information is asked to contact Newton Aycliffe police on 0345-60-60-365.