A GANG wearing white overalls doused a cash machine in petrol but failed to set it alight before going on to attack it with a crowbar for 15 minutes.
CCTV footage shows a person pouring a petrol can on to the machine at the front of a shop in Stubbington and setting a trail before setting it alight.
Gang members appear to put out the fire after it fails to explode the cash machine on the wall at the Welcome store, in Upper Old Street, just after 1.40am this morning.
One gang member then attacks the machine with a crowbar sending sparks flying and leaving it badly damaged as another masked person waits with a cable attached to a nearby waiting vehicle.
Sarah Hunt, who manages the shop, said it was ‘lucky’ the building didn’t go up in flames - with her 21-year-old son living in the flat above the store.
She said: ‘The lady who runs our bakery discovered the damage at around 6.15am this morning.
‘It looks like they tried to blow the machine out of the wall using petrol.
‘We’re lucky the whole building didn’t catch fire.’
Stubbington resident Andy Wilson was walking his dog when he came across the damage.
He said: ‘It’s horrible.
‘If you believe what you read on Facebook, there’s been a lot of low level crime in the area over the summer.
‘But nothing like this.’
Another Fareham resident, who asked not to be named, said she was shocked to see the damage.
She said: ‘I’ve lived here for six years and something like this has never happened before.
‘I thought I live in a little village where not many bad things happen.
‘About six months ago my friend who lives in the area was burgled.’
A spokesman for Hampshire Constabulary said: 'No cash was stolen from the machine.
'Enquiries are on-going.'
Anyone with information is asked to contact the police on 101, quoting 44190320801.
The cash machine remains out of use, and the Welcome store has reopened.
Welcome is a franchise of the Southern Co-op.
A spate of ram raids at cash machines hit the area late last year.
Several men were jailed for their roles in raiding a Denmead store's cash machine using a digger.