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West Suffolk: Landlords’ fury after Acton Crown, The Marquis Cornwallis, Six Bells and White Horse pubs are raided in spree of burglaries

PUBLISHED: 13:36 05 August 2014

The Marquis Cornwallis pub in Chedburgh.

The Marquis Cornwallis pub in Chedburgh.

Archant

Landlords in west Suffolk have spoken of their anger and frustration after four pubs in the region were raided by thieves in the same night.

Crown Pub in Acton near Sudbury Crown Pub in Acton near Sudbury

Suffolk police are warning businesses to upgrade their security systems after the weekend crime spree saw pubs in Chedburgh, Acton, Great Waldingfield and Horringer all targeted between 11pm on Friday and 8am the following morning.

Steve Martin, landlord at the Acton Crown, where alcohol, charity cash and a box of darts were taken, said he also lost half a day’s trade tidying up after the thieves, which he believes are operating as a gang.

“The sheer amount of damage that they caused is quite extraordinary,” he said. They were clearly intent on getting in and it did not matter how they did it.”

The thieves attempted to enter through three separate windows at the Crown, Mr Martin said, eventually “obliterating” a sash window to gain entry.

Niki Turner, landlady at The Marquis Cornwallis in Chedburgh, was also angered by the intrusion, in which alcohol, tobacco, charity boxes and energy drinks were taken.

“It’s not even the stuff that they took that’s the problem,” she said.

“It’s the fact that there’s been someone in your house when you are sleeping and you didn’t know about it.

“Initially I was incredibly cross and then I took stock of the situation and I felt even worse, worrying what might have happened if I had woken up.”

The other two pubs broken into were the White Horse in Great Waldingfield, from which a till drawer, cash and alcohol were stolen, and the Six Bells in Horringer, where a till and cash were taken.

Reports have been made of a man who was seen in the area around the time of the break-in. He is described as white, about 5ft 7in tall, with short dark hair, aged in his 30s and wearing shorts and a T-shirt.

Officers are reminding business owners to consider installing an intruder alarm, particularly in the office and staff areas, ensure windows are fitted with locks and that doors are secured with attack-tested locks.

Other advice includes having a floor safe fitted and installing an intruder activated smoke device.

The raids follow a spate of walk-in burglaries in west Suffolk over the past few weeks, which prompted police to remind residents to secure their windows and doors.

Anyone with information on the pub thefts is asked to call Pc Benjamin Oswick from Babergh police on 101.

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