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Saturday, 01 November 2014

Maryport traders shocked by charity shop burglary

Traders in Maryport rallied round this week after a charity shop was hit by burglars.

cosc 2112
RALLYING ROUND: Claire Machin from Maryport Collectibles hands over £100.10 collected from Maryport traders to Alan Hunter, centre manager at COSC

The Cosc charity shop on Senhouse Street had its £50 float, a full charity tin and £12 cash taken over the weekend.

Police think the thieves used ladders to climb up to the first floor of the Senhouse Street building between 12.45pm on Saturday and 8am on Monday.

Joan Hunter, charity shop manager, said: “It was devastating. I just can’t believe someone would do this.”

Claire Machin and Ben Opie, owners of Maryport Collectibles in Crosby Street, heard about the break-in and wanted to help.

Claire spent yesterday morning visiting all the shops in the town asking for donations to cover the cost of the lost money.

Most traders were willing to help and between them they raised £100.10.

Claire, 35, of Catherine Street, Maryport, said: “I thought it was so horrible someone stealing from a charity shop, especially near Christmas.

“I am proud of the people who have donated.

“Times are quite hard for some people and they haven’t got a lot to spare. It’s nice that some of the people who haven’t got much have given generously.”

Cosc – the Copeland Occupational and Social Centre – offers activities for people with physical disabilities and has centres in Maryport and Cleator Moor.

Money raised in the shop goes towards the organisation’s running costs.

The charity is managed by Joan’s husband Alan.

He said: “It’s overwhelming that the traders have thought about us and had a collection. We never dreamed it would happen.

“It shows what a close-knit community it is.”

The Cosc shop was not the only premises targeted by thieves over the weekend.

An attempt was also made to break into Candyland, also on Senhouse Street.

A window at Maryport’s main Post Office on High Street was smashed and a charity tin taken.

On Sunday, at about 4.20am, thieves broke into the Ellenborough Mini Market, although nothing appears to have been taken.

Steve Relph, police community support officer, said he was concerned that the crimes could be a result of the economic climate.

He urged Maryport businesses to ensure that premises were secure.

He said: “Thieves are going to the back of properties where there is less light and fewer CCTV cameras.

“We have sent a notice out to Shopwatch participants to remind them to ensure the backs of their properties are also secured.”

Burglaries have also risen in Dearham where PCSO James Graham said there had been “opportunistic” crimes.

A thief entered a property and stole a wallet containing £50 and a motorbike was stolen from Newlands Park.

A shed at Lonsdale Terrace was broken into and items taken, and there have been incidents of criminal damage.

Police patrols are being increased. Anyone with information is asked to contact police on 101.

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