Charity devastated after thousands of pounds of damage at Peterborough shop

The scene of the break in
The scene of the break in

A charity has been left devastated after raiders smashed a window and caused thousands of pounds worth of damage to the city centre store.

The break in happened at the British Heart Foundation’s furniture store at The Rivergate Centre in Peterborough at about 6am on Wednesday (April 17.)

A window of the shop was smashed, and stock taken.

An area in front of the smashed window, located near the Asda superstore, was cordoned off with police tape.

The shopping centre was shut for much of Wednesday morning as detectives carried out their investigations.

While the centre and other shops re-opened on Wednesday, the charity shop remained closed, with a note on the door telling customers the store was ‘temporarily closed.’

Caroline Usher, Regional Manager at the British Heart Foundation appealed for people to donate items of furniture to help the shop recover from the break in - as the money lost in the raid would have been used to fund vital research.

She said: “The break in at our Peterborough home store has been really disheartening for the whole team.

“It caused a huge amount of damage to the store which will cost several thousands of pounds to repair, taking money away from the BHF’s vital work.

“Items of stock were also stolen, which would have been sold to fund our research into heart and circulatory diseases.

“No one was injured but it has been hugely distressing for staff.

“I’d like to thank the community for all their support. It’s only because of our generous supporters that we are able to continue trading and funding life saving heart research.

“We are always in need of good quality furniture and electrical appliances, so please do keep us in mind in future if you are having a clear out.

“We also offer a free collection service which you can arrange by ringing our shop on 01733 821 658.”

A spokesman for the Rivergate Centre said: “The delay (in opening) was due to the police not allowing us access to the key safe in our offices so we could not open the Centre until Scenes of Crime had completed their work.

“The Centre opened for business as usual at 10am.”

The smashed window was boarded up on Wednesday afternoon.

Anyone with information about the break-in is asked to call Cambridgeshire police on 101, or Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.