"This is a nightmare" family-run business in Clapham suffers four burglaries in two weeks

Deputy manager Louise outside the damaged Spar shop in Clapham
Deputy manager Louise outside the damaged Spar shop in Clapham

A family are at their wits end after their village store was broken into four times in two weeks.

The Sugrue family run the Spar shop in High Street, Clapham, and have taken measures to prevent the break-ins, where thieves make off with items including cigarettes.

Most recently they had metal bars installed over the door, but this meant that the criminals simply changed tack ramming a vehicle into the shop door to get inside in the early hours of Wednesday morning (July 17).

Owner James Sugrue, who is the store manager, said: “This is a nightmare, it’s not just the stock, it’s the damage, the phone calls at God knows what time in the morning and the upheaval it causes for our staff. It is really unsettling.

“We just don’t know when the next phone call is going to be.”

And Mr Sugrue added that, as a family-run independent business, incidents like this make tight profit margins even tighter.

He said: “It’s very hard to make a profit anyway, without having to fork out for things like new doors. The insurance does pay out, but in turn that puts up the premiums.”

A man has been charged with burglary in connection with break-ins at retail stores across the north of the county including the Spar shop incident on July 12.

Dean Jeffs, 44, of no fixed address, has been charged with six counts of burglary other than dwelling, in relation to offences against retail stores in Flitwick, Clapham, Harrold and Bedford between 2 and 17 July.

He has been remanded in custody pending a further court appearance.