Vandals smashed the doors of a popular garden centre in the middle of the night – only to run off when the alarms triggered.
The would-be thieves smashed the doors of Radway Green Garden and Pet Centre, near Alsager.
But the owners believe they fled the scene after the automatic alarms sounded.
As a temporary measure, the business had to redirect customers through the café while police officers worked in the front of the store.
Paul Embley, who owns the garden centre with wife Allison, says there has never been an incident like this in the seven years they have been at the Crewe Road site.
The 58-year-old, from Weston, said: “Someone attempted to break in, they almost had the door off but it triggered the alarm. We think it is the alarm that scared them off. Police have now taken forensics and we are waiting to hear back.
“The door was almost in pieces. We’ve had nothing like this happen in the seven years we have been here. It took us all day to repair the damage and for a small business like us a break in or theft is serious stuff.
“They didn’t actually manage to get anything because the alarm triggers broke off. But we had to close one entrance meaning everyone had to go through the café. For half a day we only had one way for people to get into the centre.”
Paul says he is not yet sure how much the damage will cost to repair but hopes police will be able to catch the individuals.