Burglars flee scene of charity shop break-in

PUBLISHED: 13:14 12 October 2007 | UPDATED: 20:10 01 June 2010

ASSESSING THE?MESS: Victoria Gillick, right, and Lewis Wilkinson from a neighbouring shop examine the damage after the raid at the LIFE shop. Picture: BRIAN PURDY

ASSESSING THE?MESS: Victoria Gillick, right, and Lewis Wilkinson from a neighbouring shop examine the damage after the raid at the LIFE shop. Picture: BRIAN PURDY

MORALS campaigner Victoria Gillick was clearing up yesterday after burglars smashed their way into a Wisbech charity shop to steal just £20 but caused £700 worth of damage. They were spotted running from the shop in the early hours, she said. They re a

MORALS campaigner Victoria Gillick was clearing up yesterday after burglars smashed their way into a Wisbech charity shop to steal just £20 but caused £700 worth of damage.

"They were spotted running from the shop in the early hours," she said. "They're a couple of young degenerates who don't even have brains let alone cunning. They didn't even take a hammer so were unable to break through the door and instead smashed a plate glass window."

Two youths, aged about 15 to 17, were caught in the act by a neighbour who shouted at them from a nearby shop in Hill Street in the early hours of Wednesday.

"The lady next door was woken at around 2am thinking it was her cake shop that was being broken into," said Mrs Gillick. "The woman shouted to the young lads, one of whom stepped back, looked up and called for his friend, who was inside our shop, to hurry up and get out."

Mrs Gillick, a pregnancy counsellor and secretary of West Norfolk and Wisbech LIFE who run the shop, said the break-in was the shop's third in seven years. The shop opens three hours a day selling second-hand baby clothes and offers a pregnancy advice service upstairs.

"But we're not giving up," she said. "Our work is too important to stop just because a pair of dope-heads want to attack a charity shop and run off with £20," she said.

"It is depressing, though, and we may have to close for a day to get sorted. It's sad to think these young people may even have been in the shop at some time as customers and would then want to turn around and do this."

The charity has been based in Wisbech for 17 years, the last seven of them in Hill Street.

Forensics officers have been at the scene and CCTV footage is being studied for clues.

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