Break in at St Albans charity

A CHARITY is counting the cost of a break-in at one of its shops on Bank Holiday Monday.

Volunteers and staff at the Emmaus St Albans charity shop in Batford, Harpenden, discovered the following day that a window had been smashed at the back of the building to gain entry and their computer with data on it and a tin containing tip money had also been stolen.

Only days earlier, pieces of cutlery from a Victorian canteen had been stolen from the shop on the Lea Industrial Estate in Lower Luton Road, which primarily deals with furniture restored by members of the Emmaus community.

Chief executive of Emmaus St Albans, Tony Ferrier, said that they estimated there had been around �50 in the tin, made up of tips from grateful customers which went towards the Christmas fund. The computer had been about a year old and much of the data had been backed up but the charity was having to make do with a secondhand one for the time being.

Tony explained that Emmaus did a lot for people in need - giving a 20 per cent discount to those on benefits and donating furniture for free to referrals who had a place to live but no furniture of their own.

He added: “It is so frustrating because I don’t understand why someone could steal from people in need when we have such a lot of solidarity with them.”