ONE of Spalding’s newest charity shops could be forced to close after it was broken into and cash destined to help animals was stolen.
The Exotic Pet Refuge shop in Red Lion Street had the door kicked in by burglars who ripped the drawer from the till and stole a collection tin.
It is believed they got away with just £45.
Pam Mansfield, who runs the pet refuge in Deeping St James, said: “I think it is despicable that any charity shop should be broken into but we are such a small charity that we really cannot afford to lose even that amount of money.
“I am lost for words, I cannot tell you how much I hate the people who did this.”
And she said it could spell the end for the shop – less than six months after it opened – unless the premises could be properly secured to ensure it didn’t happen again.
Mrs Mansfield said: “The trouble is that if they have got away with it once, they might see us as easy pickings and we cannot afford to be dealing with this every couple of weeks.”
The burglary is believed to have happened during Sunday night and reported to the police by several passers-by who noticed the broken glass in the door on Monday morning.
The collection tin was later found empty in the Hole in the Wall passage in Spalding town centre.
Mrs Mansfield said: “I think it’s a pretty low thing to do to steal from a charity whose purpose is to feed and keep the animals at the pet refuge warm.
“If these people were so desperate for money I would rather they came in and asked for help, because this is not just about the money, but also about the time it has taken to sort out and the inconvenience.”