Dust away undesirables

PUBLISHED: 14:29 16 March 2006 | UPDATED: 13:20 04 May 2010

A BRAVE pensioner brandishing a feather duster chased off burglars she discovered breaking into her neighbour s bungalow. The 70-year-old was woken by her dog barking and discovered a teenager climbing in through the kitchen window watched by his two acco

A BRAVE pensioner brandishing a feather duster chased off burglars she discovered breaking into her neighbour's bungalow.

The 70-year-old was woken by her dog barking and discovered a teenager climbing in through the kitchen window watched by his two accomplices.

She rushed to her front door and screamed at the burglars, waving her duster and they fled empty-handed.

But just five minutes earlier the raiders had ransacked another bungalow at the sheltered housing complex in Haddenham where war veteran, Ernie Croxon, was robbed twice last year.

They kicked open the back door of the bungalow in Camping Close, smashing it off its hinges and rifled through cupboards and drawers throwing items across the bedroom.

The 77-year-old victim, who was away visiting friends, returned to find her wedding ring and another ring, the last present from her husband, had been stolen in the raid. The burglars also snatched £200 in cash.

The burglars had also targeted a third bungalow but only a day earlier the tenant's daughter had cleared the property after her mother had gone into respite care.

Last year Mr Croxon, who lives at the complex, was robbed for hundreds of pounds, including the cash he had saved for his funeral, when raiders targeted his home.

Warden Andrea Moore said of the latest incidents: "This is absolutely terrible and it leaves all the residents extremely frightened. They are always worried that if burglars have been there once they will go back again."

After Mr Croxon was targeted by thieves, staff at the sheltered housing complex called on Cambridgeshire Police's Bobbies Scheme to fit window and door locks and alarms to the properties.

"They have been fantastic," added Andrea. "They have made such a difference and it just lets the residents sleep a little easier at night."

Hereward Housing Association, which owns the complex, joined forces with Ely Police to produce a feature on security advice for the association's Hereward Herald tenants' magazine in the hope that it would encourage residents to be more security conscious.

CONTACT: Anyone with any information about the break-ins should contact Ely Police on 0845 456 4564 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

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