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UPDATED: Ashbourne cafe and shop both burgled overnight

By Ashbourne News Telegraph  |  Posted: June 17, 2014

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A cafe owner has been left ‘devastated’ after his premises was burgled overnight. It was one of two break-ins that happened in town.

Thieves broke into Chimes cafe, in St John Street, and Equatorial in Victoria Square, sometime between 6.30pm on Monday, June 16 and 9.30am on Tuesday 17.

A number of valuable items were reported stolen from Chimes, including a couple of Danish Design wristwatches valued at £350 each.

Owner Rob James said: “I’m just fed up to be honest. I moved to Ashbourne to get away from this sort of thing, but this has happened twice now.

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“I’m not blaming local people of course - but the town does seem to be targeted by criminals.”

The thieves also made off with pocket watches, modern wrist watches, a Trent Meridian artisan mantle clock and a caged singing bird automata.

The cafe suffered a break in last November, but local landlord David Leigh gave chase and caught the burglar.

A spokesman for the police said: "It has been a little while since we have seen this kind of crime in the town centre and we will be actively following up all available lines of enquiry.

"We are appealing for further information to assist us in identifying and tracing the offenders.

"If anyone was in the St John Street or Victoria Square areas last night and saw anything suspicious, we would urge them to contact officers at Ashbourne Police Station on 101.

"I hope that these are isolated occurrences but I would encourage the town’s business community to review their security arrangements and to ensure that any areas that are vulnerable are protected – especially after dark.

"Any suspicious behaviour in the town should be reported and 999 used if a crime is in progress or has just been committed."

Rob said: “It’s business as usual though - we will still be open later when the police have been, and of course over the weekend for Streetfest.”

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