TWO women who run an animal grooming parlour are urging other businesses to beware after thieves broke into the rear of their premises.
Lesley Ingham and Trudy Andrews, who own Groomingdales of Hartlepool, on Northgate, at the Headland, were shocked to discover that thieves had smashed their way through a gate at the back of the firm and made their way into a bin store.
They had snapped the bolt and lock off some gates which lead to an outbuilding and then gone inside for a snoop around.
Fortunately the pair had not stored any of their goods in the building so the crooks escaped empty handed.
The women, who both live in the Bishop Cuthbert area, then had to arrange for the landlord of the premises to re-secure it and replace the locks.
Lesley, 43, said the crime was an “inconvenience” and urged anyone who has any information about the incident to contact police.
She said: “I let Trudy’s dogs out the back while I went and put the kettle on and set up for the day, and when I went to check on the dogs I saw what had happened.
“I didn’t half get a shock, you just don’t expect it at all.
“I’m just glad we had nothing in there for them to steal.
“The police and forensics have been out and they’ve managed to get a footprint off the door.”
She added: “We just want to help the police along with their investigation and ask that if anyone saw anything suspicious to contact them.”
A spokeswoman for Cleveland Police said officers are investigating the burglary, which happened some time overnight from Tuesday into Wednesday.
Anyone with any information is asked to contact Pc Holly Angus on 101 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.