BUSINESS owners and residents have demanded CCTV on a busy Blackpool street after it was targeted by vandals and burglars.
Hazel Kay, 39, owner of Sun4U on Devonshire Road, North Shore, has been left with a bill running into thousands of pounds after the windows of the tanning shop were smashed.
But she claims the incident could have been avoided if pleas for CCTV along the row of businesses had been answered.
Calls for extra security were first made a year ago after business owners suggested there were more “undesirables” in the area than previously.
Mrs Kay today told The Gazette: “I’m appalled and embarrassed. We don’t understand why it’s happened.
“It looks like it’s been done by a hammer, just by mindless, perhaps drunken, thugs. It’s been getting worse in this area for some time but nothing like this has happened before.”
Police have said one or more vandals smashed up the shop front some time between 9pm on Friday evening and 8am on Saturday morning.
One neighbour, Lynn Sadurkis, 57, has also called for extra security in the area after her home on Devonshire Road was burgled.
Cash and jewellery worth thousands of pounds were stolen from Mrs Sadurkis’s home between 5pm and 8.30pm on Friday, October 19.
She said: “We’ve lived here nine years and it’s just got worse and worse. I think there should be more of a police presence now, or cameras as a deterrent.”
Police confirmed they were aware of the burglary and have launched an investigation to find the person responsible.
Mrs Kay, who has owned her salon for eight years, said that while she has not yet had a figure from her insurance company, she expects the cost of the damage to go into thousands of pounds.
And she fears the damage could drive away potential customers.
She said: “I should think it will cost about £3,000.
“We can still open the salon but it could put people off coming in too, it’s the image it gives you.”
A Blackpool Police spokesman confirmed officers were looking into the vandalism. He added: “We would ask anyone who witnessed the incident, or anyone with information, to come forward.”
Ward councillor for Warbreck, Coun Joyce Delves, said she had not had any incidents reported to her and was confident the area remains safe.
She said: “I don’t know of any serious problems, there have been none reported to me and no requests for CCTV. We would certainly look at it if there were a lot of incidents or it was beginning to be troublesome.”
Other business owners in the area have said that while they have not experienced vandalism or break-ins themselves, they would welcome anything that makes the area safer for businesses, shoppers and residents alike.
Mick Smith, 40, owner of shop Blackpool Locals on Devonshire Road, said: “We’ve not had any trouble, someone tried to smash my windows in a few weeks ago, but I’ve got shutters and reinforced glass. If they weren’t there I’d have been burgled years ago. Crime is a sign of the times.
“I think cameras would be beneficial. We have CCTV and I’ve had police in here before asking if it’s working because people have been robbed near the cash machine.”
Another business owner said though he would support neighbours in pleas for cameras, he only had a good view of the area.
John McDonough, 66, owner of The Fishery, said: “In the main the area’s a nice family area, it’s a safe place. If it’s for safety I’m not going to say I’d be against them.”
Anyone with information on either incident can contact Blackpool Police on 101, quoting reference number LC20121027/0500. Alternatively they can contact Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.