Police probe string of pub break-ins on same night
Police are appealing for information following a series of raids on village pubs across north east Somerset.
Cash, spirits and tobacco were taken in the break-ins at pubs in Compton Martin, West Harptree, Bishop Sutton and Paulton.
All the burglaries took place between 11.30pm on Monday February 4 and 9am on Tuesday February 5 and are being linked by police.
At the Ring O’Bells in Compton Martin, they got in by breaking a kitchen window before getting away with cigarettes, coins and a laptop.
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Landlady Lucca Leonard said that the break in had been discovered by the cleaner.
She said: “They smashed a kitchen window and had a go through the till but fortunately everything was in the safe and there were only coins.
“A laptop was also taken and a bottle of whisky but we were quite lucky."
At the Red Lion in Bishop Sutton, landlady Kerry Thatcher believes she might have disturbed the burglars when she got up in the early hours of the morning.
She said beading had been removed from a tiny window and the glass taken out by the raiders.
She said: “They even very carefully took apart an old fashioned record player that was in the way and gently placed it outside so it was not damaged."
They took about £200 in cash, a half bottle of House of Commons port and a commemorative Pussers rum. "Loads of bags of crisps were also taken and half of them were dropped on the way out.”
At the Crown Inn, West Harptree, Sandra Atkins is counting the cost of the break-in.
She said that she thinks she disturbed the thieves when she got up to use the bathroom in the early hours.
She said: “They broke in through a kitchen window and took money from a fruit machine, cigarettes and alcohol and opened bottles in the storeroom.
We were lucky but it is a horrible feeling that you are up in bed and there are people downstairs in what is after all not just a pub but our home.”
On the same night the Red Lion in Paulton was also broken into.
A police spokesman said: “We believe all these burglaries are linked and we want to hear from anyone who might have seen anything suspicious going on at any of these pubs.”
Anyone with information can contact Radstock on the non emergency number 101 or through Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.