BURGLARS have escaped with thousands of pounds worth of stock in a series of raids at a complex of shops in Bulwell.
Shoppers say the quaint Banks Yard (pictured), off Market Place, is like stepping back in time, with premises featuring Tudor frontages.
But the peace has been disturbed by as many as ten break-ins in the last three months.
Now angry shopkeepers are calling for more action from the police to tackle the problem, which is threatening their livelihoods.
Neville Buckley opened the sweet shop Candy Corner almost a year ago, But his business has been targeted three times and he has lost more than £8,000 in stock.
After one break-in, he was greeted by “devastation” and decided to sleep at the store, in a bid to deter any further raids, until he could have alarms fitted.
“There are CCTV cameras but the police can’t seem to catch the culprits,” said Mr Buckley. “So the only thing we can do is put bars up. You feel like you’re in a prison in your own shop.
He added: “I’m fed up. The police are there but they can’t catch them. They say they’re keeping an eye on it but they’re doing nothing.”
Helen Tye, who owns Essence Of Beauty on Banks Yard, said: “They’ve been into our shop twice now in the last two weeks.
“The first time, they completely wiped us out. They took all our stock, tanning equipment, spray guns, everything to do with nails. They could have set up another salon with what they took.”
Bulwell’s town-centre officers have been posting regular bulletins on the Nottinghamshire police website about Banks Yard, which is a cul-de-sac and includes shops such as a cobbler’s, beautician’s and cake store.
One man has been arrested and charged in connection with the burglaries. But officers say investigations are continuing and urged shopkeepers to make sure their premises were secure.
Sgt Christine Busuttil, of Bulwell police, said: “We have an operation in place but we need a joint approach between ourselves, the business owners and the landlords.
“We’ve sent a crime-prevention officer down there, and local beat officers have given advice on how they can secure their properties better. We also want the landlord to put more security into the yard itself.” — DISPIC NHUD12-0796-1.