This Tuesday, 11 January, two of our high street shops, Ethel Loves Me and Craft Magic, were both forced to close unexpectedly. Having coped with unprecedented trading conditions throughout the pandemic the very last thing any shopkeeper would want is to have to close just as footfall is beginning to increase and much needed sales are materialising once more.
Arriving at Ethel Loves Me on Tuesday morning, owners Jason and Jo Dorey discovered to their horror that they had been broken into, and theirs wasn’t the only shop targeted, as further along the high street, Craft Magic had suffered the same fate.
CCTV footage shows a gang of men walking along the high street trying car doors whilst spraying green paint indiscriminately as they walked along, this was around 12:30am on Tuesday morning and it is believed the same gang may well have been responsible for the two break-ins.
When I met Jo and Jason on Tuesday morning they were having to explain to their would-be customers that the shop was temporarily closed whilst the damage to the door was repaired.
As with Craft Magic the doors had been smashed open, ripping the locks from their frames which a local carpenter was repairing whilst we spoke.
Just inside the front door of Ethel Loves Me is a vintage till, (pictured) this was stolen then found emptied and abandoned in Dogs Hill Road later that morning, Craft Magic also had their takings stolen as well as a laptop and other items of value.
If you think you may have seen or heard anything suspicious then please contact Sussex Police with any information by calling 101 or report online to crimestoppers-uk.org or call 0800 555 111.
Image Credits: Jason Tovey , Nick Forman .