CCTV cameras captured footage of this morning’s ram raid in Donington when the Co-op’s food store was nearly demolished by crooks trying to steal the cash machine.
Cameras at the next door Black Bull pub filmed the entire raid.
Pub landlord Malcolm Mills and wife Jane were woken by something sounding like an “earthquake” when a stolen tractor from Bicker ploughed into the store at about 3.20am.
The landlord asked his wife, Jane, to phone police while he did his best to take pictures.
Malcolm saw three men – all with their faces covered – and said they fled when they saw him and another man who arrived on the scene.
He says the raiders made repeated attempts to get the cashpoint, ramming the tractor into the store about eight times in all.
It was a bit like an earthquake when it first hit.Landlord Malcolm Mills
“The crash woke us up,” said Malcolm. “It was a bit like an earthquake when it first hit. This place shakes when a lorry goes by.”
He believes the tractor was stolen from Bicker and driven to Donington.
Raiders failed to get the cash machine this time, because it was bricked into the wall, but Malcolm says an ATM was stolen from the store about five or six years ago.
That machine was mounted on boards and the thieves put straps around it and pulled it out.
“They literally dragged it down the street,” said Malcolm.
The Co-op is popular in Donington and draws customers from neighbouring villages.
Malcolm’s pub is known for its food and he uses the Co-op to top up provisions.
“I use the Co-op constantly,” said Malcolm. “I go in there three or four times a day. It’s like an extension to our pantry. If we run short of anything, we just nip next door.”
Regular Co-op shopper Mo Rear gets the bus from her home in Bicker to buy from Donington Co-op.
Surveying the wreckage of the store – and debris on the pavement and street – Mo told us: “It’s this day and age. If someone can go to the trouble of nicking a tractor and then doing that, I don’t know what to say – it’s people like us that have to suffer.”