I'M OFF: Latest break-in 'last straw' for Blackburn rail station shop manager

Kiosk manager Amjad Anwar says a break-in at the rail station shop is the ‘last nail in the coffin’

Kiosk manager Amjad Anwar says a break-in at the rail station shop is the ‘last nail in the coffin’

First published in News
Last updated
Blackburn Citizen: Photograph of the Author by , Crime reporter

THE manager of Blackburn railway station’s kiosk is considering quitting after thieves escaped with £5,000 of cigarettes and his takings.

Amjad Anwar said yesterday’s raid, while the shop was closed, was the latest in a string of incidents at the Station Kiosk, including repeated shoplifting and an assault last summer.

The 26-year-old, who has been helping run the family business for eight years, said he was so demoralised by what had happened he was thinking about shutting the shop.

He said: “This is the final nail in the coffin for us.

“I am devastated. Things are tough at the moment. We are considering closing it down because it is unsustainable and we are already struggling.

“The thief took about £5,000 of cigarettes and all Saturday’s takings.

“Given that we are next to a police station, we did not expect to be broken into.

“We will probably reopen today (TUES), but it will not be business as usual because we have got to get the stock in.

“It puts the shop in jeopardy because it is a low margin business.

“People are struggling and they just take whatever is not theirs. The morality is not there.”

As well as the tobacco, a till containing £500 was also grabbed after the burglar smashed their way in through a window.

Yesterday, police crime scene investigators were working to collect evidence from the newsagents.

Officers were also set to examine CCTV in which Mr Anwar said the suspected burglar could be seen wearing gloves and holding carrier bags.

It is thought the thief came from off the tracks before jumping over a wall and down the ramp on the concourse.

The till was also found dumped on the railway line.

Mr Anwar said he believed the thief had specifically targeted the cigarettes as other stock remained untouched.

In August, Mr Anwar said he was punched in the face by a customer in an argument over 5p.

The manager, whose sister Nighat owns the shop, said he believed the work being done on the regeneration of the town centre made it easier for thieves to attack.

He said: “Even though we are in the town centre, the hoardings mean there is only a little bit of visibility and we are secluded.”

The manager appealed for anybody who had any information about the burglary, which happened just after midnight yesterday to tell police.

Coun Suleman Khonat, who represents the town centre and is also a spokesman for the National Federation of Retail Newsagents, said times were hard for small businesses.

He said: “It is sad to hear this. We have a situation where the number of thefts on retail premises are increasing all the time.

“It is very worrying because we are there for the community. We are serving the community all the time from early morning to late in the evening.

“I know the lad whose shop has been targeted very well. He used to be my paperboy and my heart goes out to him.

“He has worked very hard to be able to be where he is and it is really a shame.

“People need to consider that these little shops might close. They will go all together and they could just be an empty shop sadly.

“It is very concerning because we have got young people trying to make a living. They are getting into business at a very early stage and looking to prosper, but sadly, there are some culprits who try to stop them.”

A spokesman for Lancashire Police said they had been made aware of the burglary and said an investigation was ongoing.

Anybody with information is asked to call 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.

Comments (22)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

9:40am Tue 27 May 14

alf-abett says...

For a business claiming to be struggling due to the economic climate yet they have £5000 of fags in the kiosk, seems a lot to me, but hey also leave the takings in the kiosk with what appears to be no security! beggars belief and right next door to a Police base! beggars belief again.
For a business claiming to be struggling due to the economic climate yet they have £5000 of fags in the kiosk, seems a lot to me, but hey also leave the takings in the kiosk with what appears to be no security! beggars belief and right next door to a Police base! beggars belief again. alf-abett
  • Score: 47

10:49am Tue 27 May 14

Izanears says...

alf-abett wrote:
For a business claiming to be struggling due to the economic climate yet they have £5000 of fags in the kiosk, seems a lot to me, but hey also leave the takings in the kiosk with what appears to be no security! beggars belief and right next door to a Police base! beggars belief again.
And why, if the kiosk was vulnerable was £500 left in the till? It beggars belief.
[quote][p][bold]alf-abett[/bold] wrote: For a business claiming to be struggling due to the economic climate yet they have £5000 of fags in the kiosk, seems a lot to me, but hey also leave the takings in the kiosk with what appears to be no security! beggars belief and right next door to a Police base! beggars belief again.[/p][/quote]And why, if the kiosk was vulnerable was £500 left in the till? It beggars belief. Izanears
  • Score: 35

12:42pm Tue 27 May 14

HelmshoreMan2010 says...

Perhaps it's easier and safer to leave money in the till and take it to the bank during daylight.

As for £5000 worth of ciggies, that's not that much these days!

Lets give the guy a break, he's the victim here!
Perhaps it's easier and safer to leave money in the till and take it to the bank during daylight. As for £5000 worth of ciggies, that's not that much these days! Lets give the guy a break, he's the victim here! HelmshoreMan2010
  • Score: 91

1:10pm Tue 27 May 14

noddy57 says...

You have to feel sorry for the chap, but in this day and age you cannot be too naive as to leave £ 500 in the till just because your close to a police station, The police are so overstretched that they only operate part time, not like the old police where you felt safe, they may as well not be there,.
You have to feel sorry for the chap, but in this day and age you cannot be too naive as to leave £ 500 in the till just because your close to a police station, The police are so overstretched that they only operate part time, not like the old police where you felt safe, they may as well not be there,. noddy57
  • Score: 49

1:39pm Tue 27 May 14

ikap22 says...

It's not much 5k worth of cigs in this day n age, box of 20's is around £9. Low life scum bag's.
It's not much 5k worth of cigs in this day n age, box of 20's is around £9. Low life scum bag's. ikap22
  • Score: 59

3:16pm Tue 27 May 14

hasslem hasslem says...

Nobody - but nobody leaves that much in a til overnight.....partic
ularly if you have been broken into before.
Nobody - but nobody leaves that much in a til overnight.....partic ularly if you have been broken into before. hasslem hasslem
  • Score: 36

4:19pm Tue 27 May 14

Izanears says...

HelmshoreMan2010 wrote:
Perhaps it's easier and safer to leave money in the till and take it to the bank during daylight.

As for £5000 worth of ciggies, that's not that much these days!

Lets give the guy a break, he's the victim here!
Agree on the value of the ciggies, but for the life in me I cannot understand why he left the money. Surely he could have taken it to the bank or even to his home. Even Supermarkets never leave money it till when they are closed.
[quote][p][bold]HelmshoreMan2010[/bold] wrote: Perhaps it's easier and safer to leave money in the till and take it to the bank during daylight. As for £5000 worth of ciggies, that's not that much these days! Lets give the guy a break, he's the victim here![/p][/quote]Agree on the value of the ciggies, but for the life in me I cannot understand why he left the money. Surely he could have taken it to the bank or even to his home. Even Supermarkets never leave money it till when they are closed. Izanears
  • Score: 35

4:36pm Tue 27 May 14

HelmshoreMan2010 says...

Supermarkets have armoured vans to come and collect the money, as said in my earlier post if faced with carrying the money out at night and getting mugged or taking it out the next day then the next day could seem like a safer option.

I have worked in a couple of shops where we will 'bank' at around 5pm and anything we take after that will be taken the next day as it's just too risky. Although leaving it in a shop overnight is risky too it is a much better option than giving it to a walking muggable target.
Supermarkets have armoured vans to come and collect the money, as said in my earlier post if faced with carrying the money out at night and getting mugged or taking it out the next day then the next day could seem like a safer option. I have worked in a couple of shops where we will 'bank' at around 5pm and anything we take after that will be taken the next day as it's just too risky. Although leaving it in a shop overnight is risky too it is a much better option than giving it to a walking muggable target. HelmshoreMan2010
  • Score: 48

5:12pm Tue 27 May 14

hasslem hasslem says...

HelmshoreMan2010 wrote:
Supermarkets have armoured vans to come and collect the money, as said in my earlier post if faced with carrying the money out at night and getting mugged or taking it out the next day then the next day could seem like a safer option.

I have worked in a couple of shops where we will 'bank' at around 5pm and anything we take after that will be taken the next day as it's just too risky. Although leaving it in a shop overnight is risky too it is a much better option than giving it to a walking muggable target.
that's garbage - you dont leave money in the till - its one of the first things you learn about running a shop, pub/bar or anything like a salon etc.

it really is the most basic of shop/service outlet rules.
[quote][p][bold]HelmshoreMan2010[/bold] wrote: Supermarkets have armoured vans to come and collect the money, as said in my earlier post if faced with carrying the money out at night and getting mugged or taking it out the next day then the next day could seem like a safer option. I have worked in a couple of shops where we will 'bank' at around 5pm and anything we take after that will be taken the next day as it's just too risky. Although leaving it in a shop overnight is risky too it is a much better option than giving it to a walking muggable target.[/p][/quote]that's garbage - you dont leave money in the till - its one of the first things you learn about running a shop, pub/bar or anything like a salon etc. it really is the most basic of shop/service outlet rules. hasslem hasslem
  • Score: 38

5:26pm Tue 27 May 14

HelmshoreMan2010 says...

So putting yourself or staff in danger late at night is better?

Seems I've always been lucky enough to work in shops that value life more than money :)
So putting yourself or staff in danger late at night is better? Seems I've always been lucky enough to work in shops that value life more than money :) HelmshoreMan2010
  • Score: 33

5:34pm Tue 27 May 14

A Darener says...

Surely a safe could have been installed out of sight for the cash. Even a cheap one from B & Q would have been a better bet than leaving in the till.
Surely a safe could have been installed out of sight for the cash. Even a cheap one from B & Q would have been a better bet than leaving in the till. A Darener
  • Score: 42

8:17pm Tue 27 May 14

batesempire says...

Its sad to hear of your news at least you have some press coverage that may alert anyone with information to come forward . My dads shop has been targeted before but nothing gets done about it . I hope that these sad people slip up and get caught .
Its sad to hear of your news at least you have some press coverage that may alert anyone with information to come forward . My dads shop has been targeted before but nothing gets done about it . I hope that these sad people slip up and get caught . batesempire
  • Score: 34

8:46pm Tue 27 May 14

darwenTower says...

Let's be honest, the only thing putting people off a life of crime would be their own morals.

It's about time the authorities started rewarding people who earn their own living by punishing the parasites that feed off them one way or another.
Let's be honest, the only thing putting people off a life of crime would be their own morals. It's about time the authorities started rewarding people who earn their own living by punishing the parasites that feed off them one way or another. darwenTower
  • Score: 40

9:47pm Tue 27 May 14

Steven Seagull says...

hasslem hasslem wrote:
Nobody - but nobody leaves that much in a til overnight.....partic

ularly if you have been broken into before.
Agreed.
[quote][p][bold]hasslem hasslem[/bold] wrote: Nobody - but nobody leaves that much in a til overnight.....partic ularly if you have been broken into before.[/p][/quote]Agreed. Steven Seagull
  • Score: 26

10:44pm Tue 27 May 14

Steven11 says...

Time to get an insurance claim form and crime number. !
Time to get an insurance claim form and crime number. ! Steven11
  • Score: 30

1:12am Wed 28 May 14

woolywords says...

Wait a minute here..
aren't these the same people who wanted to open a Subway joint?
and they suffer this catastrophic burglary?
now, they are bailing out?
The same people that, got closed down, in the other cafe..for it's problems.

Not that I'm suggesting anything here, but...
Give me a clue, which part of reality am I supposed to suspend here?
Wait a minute here.. aren't these the same people who wanted to open a Subway joint? and they suffer this catastrophic burglary? now, they are bailing out? The same people that, got closed down, in the other cafe..for it's problems. Not that I'm suggesting anything here, but... Give me a clue, which part of reality am I supposed to suspend here? woolywords
  • Score: 37

1:29am Wed 28 May 14

woolywords says...

You do know that, they have to chip in, for the £100+k makeover, that Subway plan for this plot?
Guess that's another plan, that bites the dust..
Let me beat Burner to it..

Steve walks warily down the street,
with the brim pulled way down low
Ain't no sound but the sound of his feet,
machine guns ready to go
Are you ready, Are you ready for this
Are you hanging on the edge of your seat
Sign above the doorway says,
Subways here, ready to eat
but.. this Subways serves, nothing but dust.

Burner, likes Queen tunes.
You do know that, they have to chip in, for the £100+k makeover, that Subway plan for this plot? Guess that's another plan, that bites the dust.. Let me beat Burner to it.. Steve walks warily down the street, with the brim pulled way down low Ain't no sound but the sound of his feet, machine guns ready to go Are you ready, Are you ready for this Are you hanging on the edge of your seat Sign above the doorway says, Subways here, ready to eat but.. this Subways serves, nothing but dust. Burner, likes Queen tunes. woolywords
  • Score: 34

10:10am Wed 28 May 14

M.DANNY says...

Never leave too much money in till and no shops are safe with many thefts and robberies going on in town.
Even homes are not safe many burglaries on rise.Blackburn and many parts of UK have seen that robberies and burglaries are increasing in this current economic climate .
People need to invest in securities like cctv, burglar alarms and form a neighbourhood watch scheme to prevent crimes in your locality.
Never leave too much money in till and no shops are safe with many thefts and robberies going on in town. Even homes are not safe many burglaries on rise.Blackburn and many parts of UK have seen that robberies and burglaries are increasing in this current economic climate . People need to invest in securities like cctv, burglar alarms and form a neighbourhood watch scheme to prevent crimes in your locality. M.DANNY
  • Score: 31

12:27pm Wed 28 May 14

phil kernot says...

British rail wanted £40'000 just to put the electrics in as it would have been sub. Let to subway Looks like the titanic was more watertight than this business plan lol..
British rail wanted £40'000 just to put the electrics in as it would have been sub. Let to subway Looks like the titanic was more watertight than this business plan lol.. phil kernot
  • Score: -29

2:49pm Sat 31 May 14

ConcernedOssy says...

phil kernot wrote:
British rail wanted £40'000 just to put the electrics in as it would have been sub. Let to subway Looks like the titanic was more watertight than this business plan lol..
£40,000 seems a lot for electrics how did they arrive at this figure ??
[quote][p][bold]phil kernot[/bold] wrote: British rail wanted £40'000 just to put the electrics in as it would have been sub. Let to subway Looks like the titanic was more watertight than this business plan lol..[/p][/quote]£40,000 seems a lot for electrics how did they arrive at this figure ?? ConcernedOssy
  • Score: 31

6:10pm Sat 31 May 14

ConcernedOssy says...

Izanears wrote:
alf-abett wrote:
For a business claiming to be struggling due to the economic climate yet they have £5000 of fags in the kiosk, seems a lot to me, but hey also leave the takings in the kiosk with what appears to be no security! beggars belief and right next door to a Police base! beggars belief again.
And why, if the kiosk was vulnerable was £500 left in the till? It beggars belief.
So The Moral to the story is if you want to break the law Next door to a police station is the best place to do it or perhaps there are only "Sleeping Policemen" in Blackburn to match the Sleeping Clowncil LOL
[quote][p][bold]Izanears[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]alf-abett[/bold] wrote: For a business claiming to be struggling due to the economic climate yet they have £5000 of fags in the kiosk, seems a lot to me, but hey also leave the takings in the kiosk with what appears to be no security! beggars belief and right next door to a Police base! beggars belief again.[/p][/quote]And why, if the kiosk was vulnerable was £500 left in the till? It beggars belief.[/p][/quote]So The Moral to the story is if you want to break the law Next door to a police station is the best place to do it or perhaps there are only "Sleeping Policemen" in Blackburn to match the Sleeping Clowncil LOL ConcernedOssy
  • Score: 29

6:12pm Sat 31 May 14

ConcernedOssy says...

Is the Clowncillor KLONUT or DONUT ????
Is the Clowncillor KLONUT or DONUT ???? ConcernedOssy
  • Score: 29

Comments are closed on this article.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree