A SHOP owner says his village has been left vulnerable after his premises was targeted during a string of burglaries in the district.

John Wilkinson said the reason three men, who attempted to break in to his shop, Shorts of Corbridge, in the early hours of last Wednesday morning, did not manage to get in was because he had extra security precautions in place.

Police were called to the menswear clothing shop on Middle Street at 2.55am, but the three men had fled the scene after being disturbed.

Mr Wilkinson said that the men had tried to smash their way through the window, but were unable to due to special safety glass. And a crowbar was used to try to break through the door, but it had a steel frame which prevented them gaining access.

“They were scared off because by that time there were residents hanging out their windows because of the noise,” he explained.

“We have had a spate of shoplifters over the past six to eight weeks and other traders are concerned as others have experienced shoplifters in the past month or so.

“We basically never see police in Corbridge and I know they are under-resourced, but it leaves us feeling a bit vulnerable.”

It comes after Northumbria Police were made aware of burglaries in other parts of the district this month, although they said they were not aware of an increase in these crimes.

They included attempted burglaries at a garage and two dwellings in Wylam, burglaries to a shed and a garage in Prudhoe and two garages in Hexham.

A Northumbria Police spokeswoman said: “We take reports of burglary very seriously and will always do our utmost to investigate where an offence has taken place. As well as carry out thorough investigations our officers also offer crime prevention advice to homeowners to help them keep their premises and belongings safe and secure.”