Church raiders steal just £5 after break in

'Saddened': Rev Martin Whiffen with the damaged door at Chorley United Reformed Church
'Saddened': Rev Martin Whiffen with the damaged door at Chorley United Reformed Church
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Thieves smashed their way through doors to steal just a few pounds in cash from a popular church.

The break-in took place at the historic Chorley United Reformed Church.

Chorley United Reformed Church

Chorley United Reformed Church

The thoughtless raiders caused considerable damage as they forced their way into the Hollinshead Street building.

They got away with just £5 worth of loose change in 5ps and 10ps, which was collected by young people from the church to help educate people oversees.

They made an unsuccessful attempt to smash into the church safe.

Church minister Reverend Martin Whiffen said: “We are saddened that our church has been targeted in this way.

“We work hard to serve the community, not only through our open kitchen and the new soup kitchen, but by hosting numerous community groups.”

The church’s property steward Brian Darbyshire said: “We didn’t lose much, as our church does not have any valuable property and money is never kept on site.

“But the 50-plus club, run by Lisieux Hall, had their session disrupted and you can’t put a price on that.”

The raiders struck overnight on Friday and Saturday, January 23 and 24.

They smashed through three doors.

The church says the theft is the latest in a number of local churches and businesses to be targeted in this way.

Chorley United Reformed Church was founded in 1792.

It is now one of the largest United Reformed Churches in the North West.

The congregation includes two talented choirs – and even a 12-strong puppet team. The church hires out rooms which are used by the local 
community and it runs young people’s organisations such as scouts, guides, cubs, brownies, beavers and rainbows.

In partnership with Chorley Help the Homeless, it currently provides a free meal each Thursday evening to anyone who wishes to attend. The break-in has been reported to Chorley Police who are investigating.

Anyone who might have witnessed the incident, or who has information about it can ring police on 101.

Or they can call the Crimestoppers charity anonymously on 0800 555 111.