Raiders break into dealer’s warehouse

A catering equipment installer from Lancashire is cursing its luck after thieves smashed their way into its warehouse and made off with £11,000 worth of kit.

Mainland Catering Equipment was targeted last Thursday night by the intruders, who also stole a van after snatching a set of keys from the company’s offices.

The burglars are understood to have broken into the premises through a ground-floor window and stole the keys to a Mercedes Sprinter van worth £4,500.

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The vehicle was loaded with commercial cooking equipment from a pub clearance job that Rossendale-based MCE had earlier carried out.

John Hardie, managing director of MCE, told the Lancashire Telegraph that the burglary had hit the company hard.

He said: “There are 13 of us here. We’re a small but very busy business and we’re still counting the costs. One of the lads noticed we were one van short in the morning. Then we came in and saw all the glass on the floor and cabinet doors which they’d tried to rip open.”

The equipment inside the van included two electrical fryers, four microwaves, a grill, a sink, a dishwasher, six work benches, a six burner range cooker, an electrical griddle and a convection oven, according to the paper. “It’s just not what you need when you’re a growing business,” said Hardie.

Police have warned local catering establishments to be wary of anybody offering products for cheap that match the description of those listed as they could be linked to the burglary.

Mr Hardie could not be reached for further comment when we called MCE this morning.

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