Rugby business owner says latest window smash is the final straw

None of the incidents have been captured on CCTV.  Pictured: Mark Sharman (Business Owner)
None of the incidents have been captured on CCTV. Pictured: Mark Sharman (Business Owner)

A town centre business owner has said he is considering moving elsewhere in Rugby after a spate of incidents causing damage to his shop.

Mark Sharman, who owns That’s Shoe Business on the corner of High Street, has had nine shop windows smashed in just two years.

He says he has reported them to Rugby First but each time, he has been told they were not captured on CCTV.

And the final straw came after he reported the latest one on Sunday, June 5.

Mr Sharman said: “They sent one of the town rangers into the shop who said they had checked the cameras and again nothing had been picked up.

“This time they said it was because a hanging basket was obscuring the CCTV camera’s view. The hanging basket is still there. It’s more than a week later and it’s not been moved yet.”

He added: “I think the response from Rugby First is really disappointing. I pay my BID money, I keep the shop front clean – and for what?

“I’m in a prime town centre spot and it’s not properly covered by CCTV. It’s poor.

“The end of my lease is two years away, so I’m considering moving into the Clock Towers where there’s more security. Or maybe Elliot’s Field – that’s where everyone else is going.”

When asked for a response to Mr Sharman’s comments, Aftab Gaffar, managing director of Rugby First, said: “We are obviously very sorry to hear of the broken window and have been liaising directly with Mark.

“Rugby First investigates all incidents that are reported by town centre businesses and provides advice and guidance to them following a review of what happened.

“In some cases the matter is passed through to the police for further investigation which happened with this particular incident.

“As people will appreciate there are far more businesses than cameras which means cameras are unable to always focus on one particular business.

“Sometimes the cameras view may be obstructed and where this occurs, particularly in known incident locations, Rugby First will where possible look to see if the obstruction can be removed.

“Rugby First is very aware of the concerns raised by businesses in and around the junction of Little Church Street and High Street and we are working with the police and other safety partnership groups to resolve the ongoing problem. CCTV is playing a key role in this.”