Audacious burglars cut a shop’s power supply before forcing their way inside in the early hours of the morning.
They raided the Co-op in Lancaster Road, Knott End, at around 3.30am today, after breaking into a nearby electricity substation and cutting the power, police said.
A manhunt has now been launched for the burglars, who escaped empty-handed after searching the premises.
The break-in was discovered when staff arrived at the shop to open up at around 6am, police said.
“The offenders managed to enter an electricity substation and cut off the power to surrounding properties,” a spokeswoman said.
“They then entered the Co-op, forced open the office door, and opened a cash container but it was empty.
“They then left empty-handed.”
Police officers were called to the scene and are now carrying out further enquiries, the spokeswoman added.
It is hoped CCTV cameras in the area will have captured the raiders in their attempt, although no arrests have so far been made.
A spokesman for Electricity North West, said: “We received reports from the police that one of our substations in Knott End was broken into which caused the loss of power to 201 customers in the area at 4.17am this morning.
“Our engineers quickly arrived onsite and restored power to all customers at 6.27am.
“We will fully repair any damage to the substation and carry out a full investigation.”