CCTV footage of the masked thieves inside the Charlton Arms Hotel in Ludlow has been posted online by owner Cedric Bosi, and has already attracted tens of thousands of views – and plenty of outrage from those who have seen it.
The break-in took place in the early hours of Tuesday. The duo forced a window at the pub, restaurant and rooms, which sits next to Ludford Bridge on the Ludford side of the River Teme, to gain entry.
But once inside the pair found little to take, turning to charity boxes in the bar, and a pot of money for staff tips when finding the till empty.
Uploading CCTV to his Facebook page, Mr Bosi, who previously worked alongside his brother Claude at Ludlow’s Michelin-starred Hibiscus restaurant, said: “Low life thieves at the Charlton last night.
“Stole the charity boxes and the staff tips!!! Anybody with any info please call the police! We have had enough of this in Ludlow.”
Speaking to the Shropshire Star, he said the theft was “disgusting”.
He said the thieves also made off with one bottle of Amaretto and one bottle of Vodka, but nothing else.
“They were hanging around outside the pub for a good 20 minutes before hand,” he said.
“They were actually inside the pub at about 3.50am.”
He added the pair had also taken money left by customers as tips for the staff, earned because of good service.
He said the burglars were clearly not professionals and had made do with whatever cash they could find as there was nothing in the till.
“What annoys me is that this kind of thing has been happening all over Ludlow for about a year now.”
Charity boxes taken included those for Megan Baker House, a centre between Ludlow and Leominster that offers education provision for the mentally and physically disabled, and wildlife charity the RSPB.
He said the break-in had happened despite there being people on the premises.
“I had residents that night. I’ve got nine bedrooms upstairs and there were two staff on site – though nobody heard anything. In any case, we do tell staff not to try to stop them but just to call police, it’s not worth maybe getting stabbed over a bottle of Amaretto,” he said.
He said people had come forward privately to him saying they recognised the two in the CCTV footage, and he had passed names on to police.
Lee Gough, chief executive of Megan Baker House, said she was shocked and disappointed at the theft.
The centre provides free education services for children, teenagers and adults with special educational needs and physical disabilities, such as cerebral palsy, head injury, stroke, dyspraxia and early on-set Parkinson’s disease.