'I opened the bedroom window and shouted out "Don't move. I've got a loaded gun on you".'
Mr Thomas kept the shotgun pointed at the burglars as he told them he had called the police, even though he had not.
The terrified burglars pleaded for mercy. Mr Thomas went back into the house, dialled 999 and put his gun safely back in the cabinet.
He said: 'I called the police and they told me they didn't have anyone available to come over right away but to put the gun away so I did.
'When I went downstairs, they were getting the bikes out of the car and drove off.'
Sussex Police said they were called to The Anchor just after 2am last Saturday but that by the time officers arrived, at 2.50am, there was no trace of the offenders.
A spokeswoman said: 'The call was graded for immediate response. Officers arrived as soon as possible but were responding to other calls at the time.'
Immediate response for a home invasion takes FIFTY MINUTES? The police told this man to put his gun away and then came rolling in almost an hour later. If this man had not pulled a gun on the intruders the outcome could have been very different. Unbelievable.