Devastated staff at the British Heart Foundation were shocked to discover that £200 had been taken from the charity shop during a break-in on Friday night.
The much-loved Waterborne Walk store has had its safe, collection box, and some Christmas cards taken, as its front door was smashed to force entry into the building.
The money would have gone towards helping medical research into heart conditions, while a little had been collected to be put aside for the hardworking volunteers’ Christmas meal.
Michael Bunning, of The British Heart Foundation, said: “The bottom panel of the front door had been forced open with a screwdriver and the safe had been broken free from its bolts on the concrete floor of the main sorting room.
“Everyone has been shaken up by it and can’t believe someone would do a thing like this. However, sadly, we do actually get people stealing from our charity shop quite often - as soon as you turn your back people can try and take something,”
On Saturday morning at 8.15am Michael received a call from upset shop manager, Dilly Clayton, who had arrived to find that the British Heart Foundation had been broken into.
Michael said: “I hope we’ve got CCTV footage of those involved in the break-in.”
The shop has already suffered at the hands of cold-hearted thieves, when during the 2011 Christmas period £100 cash was taken from the charity’s Christmas raffle donations, while the shop was trashed in the process - with the thieves even taking the staff’s teabags!
Thankfully, an anonymous LBO reader left the charity a £250 donation in January 2012, after being appalled to learn that the shop was ransacked.
A spokesman from Bedfordshire Police said: “ We were called at approximately 09:17 on Saturday, December 10, to reports of a burglary in a charity shop on Waterborne Walk, Leighton Buzzard.
“The offence is believed to have been committed between 17:15 on Friday, December 9, and 08:15 on Saturday, December 10.
“The offenders had forced entry, smashing a glass panel in a door. Money from a safe, a collection box and a selection of Christmas cards have been taken.
“If anyone has information to the offence please call 101 quoting the reference number JD/50642/2016.”