Portsmouth pub landlord puts up reward to catch thief

Owner of The Lanyard Steve Hudson next to the safe from where �5,000 was stolen in a raid this morning''''Picture: Malcolm Wells (141202-9884)
Owner of The Lanyard Steve Hudson next to the safe from where �5,000 was stolen in a raid this morning''''Picture: Malcolm Wells (141202-9884)
M275. Picture: Cesar Moreno Huerta

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A PUB landlord has put up a £2,000 reward for anybody who gives information that catches the crooks that broke into his pub and plundered his safe.

Thieves broke into The Lanyard, on London Road, North End, at 2.30am this morning.

Owner Steve Hudson, from Southsea, said they had broken in and slipped through a small window on the side of the pub, before kicking in the office door.

Once inside, they ransacked the office and managed to find the safe key, before helping themselves to around £5,000.

Mr Hudson, 45, said staff had taken some money to the bank on Saturday, so the thieves may have come away with less money than they were expecting.

He added: ‘It’s very upsetting. It’s a lot for a local business to lose.

‘That money was for us to pay staff and suppliers.’

Mr Hudson took over the pub in December, when former owners Bramwell Pub Company went into administration.

He also owns Drift bar in Palmerston Road and the Shepherd’s Crook, on Goldsmith Avenue, Southsea.

He said: ‘We have put a good CCTV in and monitoring alarms. We knew they were in there but they had been and gone by the time we got there.’

The crooks damaged the CCTV system, which Mr Hudson said comprehensively covers the pub with 35 cameras.

‘It looks like they knew what they were doing,’ said Mr Hudson.

‘I have put up a personal reward of £2,000 of my own savings for anybody that gives information that leads to a conviction. It’s just disgusting what they have done.’

A spokesman from Hampshire Constabulary confirmed they are investigating the break-in.

Mr Hudson remains hopeful that footprints found by the police will lead to the thieves being caught.

He added: ‘It’s tough times out there but go and get a job like everybody else. We work hard to get our money. That’s the most disappointing thing – it’s other people preying on other hard-working people.’

Anyone with information should call police on 101 or anonymously through Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.