Thieves target Bury St Edmunds leisure venue twice in three weeks

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The owner of a sports bar that has been broken into twice in three weeks says the courts are too lenient and sentences do not serve as a deterrent.

Pot Black Sports Bar in Eastgate Street, Bury St Edmunds, has been struck by thieves twice in a matter of weeks.

The most recent break-in took place around 4am last Monday, when the door to the snooker hall was forced open and three tills - each containing £100 - were ‘ripped out’.

Andy Goodridge, who took over running the venue seven years ago, said when it was targeted the first time, he caught the offenders on CCTV and turned them over to police, only to see them receive suspended sentences and walk out of court.

He said: “The courts are a disgrace. They are in the wrong and if the prisons aren’t big enough they need to build bigger prisons - there’s no real deterrent. It’s like the world’s gone mad.”

In the wake of the second break-in, he added: “I could have cried to be honest. It’s very demoralising when you’re working and working and working.

“The last few years have been difficult anyway without having to deal with things like this - the worst thing will be when it comes to my insurance renewal.”

Security at the leisure venue has been stepped up and Mr Goodridge has vowed ‘no way will they (the thieves) get the better of’ him as he continues to look ‘at all the options,’ including hiring a security guard.

An attempt was also made to break-in to Bury Bowl last Monday. Anyone with information should call police on 101.