Traders in fear after spate of shop break-ins

Traders in fear after spate of shop break-ins

A TRADER hit out at thieves who struck in Batley town centre on Monday for the fourth time.

Javed Iqbal, of the Batley Bargain Centre, was left with a £1,000 bill for damage and had a Playstation 4 stolen.

Raiders smashed the shop’s front window and a glass cabinet just yards from Batley Police Station.

Mr Iqbal, who has run the business for nine years, was called by police at around 2.10am.

Only the previous night, at about the same time, burglars stole perfume from the neighbouring Co-op pharmacy in the Market Place.

In that incident, suspects are believed to have crawled in after smashing a glass panel in the front door.

Prescription drugs were stolen from there on May 28, while on May 13 the Corner Cafe was hit.

Mr Iqbal said: “When I saw the damage I felt like crying. There was glass everywhere and the shelves of the display cabinet had collapsed. It's a tough time as it is but something like this really sets you back and it’s not just the money.

“It’s getting hold of a window company and getting them to come ASAP. It’s a lot of stress."

He added: “I can’t put shutters up because the council say it’s a listed building and they won’t allow it.”

At the Corner Cafe, thieves stole a till, which will cost about £150 to replace, after forcing the front door.

The till contained some cash and burglars also made off with a tip jar and a Barnado’s charity box.

Owner Angela Putterill said: “It’s not just that we’ve lost money, there’s the shock and stress of it all.

“You go in on a morning and you have your routines and then when you go to the till you find there’s no till, it’s gone.

“It makes you wonder what’s going to happen next. You’re left with a feeling of unrest.”

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