Raiders admit £50k crowbar raid in Bacup

The thieves were caught on CCTV

The thieves were caught on CCTV

First published in North West

TWO men have admitted their involvement in a raid at Bacup Hub which caused £50,000 damage.

George Taylor, 23, of Blackthorn Terrace, Bacup, and Christopher Richards, 25, of Gordon Street, Bacup, pleaded guilty to burglary, at Burnley Magistrates’ Court.

They were part of a four-strong gang who broke into the Burnley Road community centre, on January 2, using a crowbar.

Owner Catherine Murphy said she was disgusted, especially as Richards held his wedding reception at the venue last August.

Having trashed the venue’s bar, the intruders stole dozens of bottles of spirits during a spree that lasted more than nine hours.

The culprits initially disabled the alarm at around 10.45pm, and waited across the road to see if there was any response.

After breaking in through the badminton court, they remained on the site until 7.15am the next morning, leaving with goods several times, and returning in different clothes. Sports classes and car boot sales were cancelled as a result of the damage.

Ms Murphy said: “I’m delighted they’ve been in court, but there are still at least two more people out there.

“I really went out on a limb for Chris (Richards) and his wedding. I feel betrayed.

“The police have done really well. It was cringeworthy watching what they did back on CCTV.

“I have spent £8,000 already replacing stolen stuff.

“We’ve got cardboard and wood in place of broken windows, a new alarm that calls us within three minutes of being activated, and seven new CCTV cameras.

“My insurers are waiting until the court process is completed before they let me know if they can help.”

The defendants will be sentenced at Burnley Crown Court on March 4.

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