A thief smashed his way into a hair salon and fled with raffle prizes for a cancer charity.

The intruder targeted GCHQ Hair Designers on Brockholes Lane in Brockholes in the early hours of Monday morning and caused well over £1,000 damage to steal the prizes for Macmillan Cancer Support worth a few hundreds.

It was especially galling for salon owner Gary Cook who had just paid his final cheque over after the salon had undergone a three-week revamp to mark its 10th anniversary.

“I’m just so furious that someone has stolen raffle prizes,” said 42-year-old Gary. “It happened at 4am on Monday morning and the burglar was seen by an off-duty policeman who gave chase but then lost him in nearby woods.

“The police then brought in a dog to try to pick up the trail but no-one was found. The police response has been wonderful, especially as the break-in has left staff feeling vulnerable.

“The burglar smashed the main window to get in which has cost £400 to replace and also damaged a £700 TV screen in the window and that’s before all the damage he caused inside.

The raffle prizes were all top quality hair products such as L’Oreal and Sebastian which were in a briefcase the intruder stole. He also took other stock from the salon including GHD straightening irons.

Damage inside GC HQ Hair Designers on Brockholes Lane in Brockholes
Damage inside GC HQ Hair Designers on Brockholes Lane in Brockholes
 

People had already bought raffle tickets worth £85 and Gary revealed his customers immediately rallied round after hearing about the burglary and he has now been inundated with new raffle prizes.

“We now have more raffle prizes than we had before and they are still coming in,” he said. “The response has been amazing.”

The coffee morning at the salon will be on Friday, September 27, from 10am to 1pm.

It’s Macmillan’s biggest fundraising event when the charity asks people nationwide to stage an event. In 2012 115,000 people signed up, raising a record £15m.

Police have CCTV footage of the burglar and inquiries are continuing.

Anyone with information should contact Pc Simon Andrews at the Valleys Neighbourhood Policing Team via 101.