A father of two young children feels let down over a “lack of police help” during an attempted break-in at his home.

Andrew Lee, who lives in The Gossamers, Watford, with his wife and children aged two and four, was still awake at 1.50am on Sunday.

He suddenly heard voices outside and banging on his front door but when nobody in the house answered, this led to the door handle being shaken and thumping on his windows.

Mr Lee phoned the police and gave his details while explaining what had happened and says he was reassured that a unit would be sent out.

However, two minutes into the phone call he says he was told that this was no longer possible as the banging had stopped.

He said: “I was angry as my two young children were in the house but nothing could be done to stop this from happening to us.

“It is not good enough and something more should have been done to protect and reassure my family even if there was no burglary in the end.”

A spokesperson for Hertfordshire Constabulary responded: “The call was initially routed for an immediate response but as the call handler continued to speak to the man it became clear that the banging had stopped and those responsible were no longer believed to be outside the property. The man also said that it could have been someone he knew or a neighbour banging, although this would be unusual.

“A threat, harm and risk assessment was carried out and the call was downgraded as not requiring an immediate response. The man was advised that if the banging occurred again he should call police via 999 so that officers could attend as quickly as possible. He was also given the advice to call back if he found any damage to the outside of his property in the morning so that a crime report could be created.

“The call handler, who was on the phone to the man for more than 10 minutes, was empathetic, giving reassurance and general security advice. She also fully explained why officers would not be attending the address at that time. The man then decided to terminate the call.”