Burglars in charity shop raid

The British Heart Foundation charity shop on Standishgate
The British Heart Foundation charity shop on Standishgate

CALLOUS thieves who ransacked offices at a Wigan charity shop causing thousands of pounds worth of damage are being hunted by police.

Staff arrived at the British Heart Foundation shop on Standishgate to find the shop had been burgled overnight.

The offenders had forced open the door shutters, smashed their way into the premises and attempted to steal the safe.

Unable to remove it, the offenders left after ripping if off the wall causing a huge hole. They also smashed up work surfaces in the shop as well as workers’ lockers.

While around just £50 in cash was stolen, the British Heart Foundation in Wigan now faces a huge bill of thousands of pounds to repair the damage caused between Saturday evening and Sunday morning.

Assistant manager Pauline Smith said: “I felt physically sick when I came into work this morning.

“To break into somewhere is a horrible thing to do anyway but to burgle a charity shop is just low, it’s like breaking into somebody’s house.

“There wasn’t much money for them to take but they stole the shop float and the lottery money from my locker.

“We just can’t believe how much damage has been caused for such a small return and we are really appealing to anybody who may know anything to call the police to try to catch these people – someone must know who they are.

“We are also short of volunteers and so any help during this difficult time would be really appreciated.

“We don’t understand why we were targeted, we seem to be the only shop in the area that was burgled on this particular night – but it’s not as if a charity shop has a lot of money to steal though.”

A spokesman for Greater Manchester Police said: “We received reports of a burglary at the British Heart Foundation shop on Standishgate.

“The incident is believed to have happened any time between 5.30pm on Saturday and 9am on Sunday.

“Inquiries are ongoing and police are appealing for any witnesses who may have information to call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.”

Any volunteers should call into the shop or call 01942 820155.