Security reviewed at hubs following break-ins

Brookwood Library, Bearsden Library'Photo by Emma Mitchell'7/6/13
Brookwood Library, Bearsden Library'Photo by Emma Mitchell'7/6/13

East Dunbartonshire Council has suspended cash payments at its three community hubs until further notice, the Herald can reveal.

The move follows a spate of break-ins at the facilities.

The community hub in Bishopbriggs Library was the first to be targeted in the early hours of Wednesday, September 10, when thieves escaped with an undisclosed quantity of cash.

Then, on Sunday, October 6, Kirkintilloch Community Hub in William Patrick Library was hit.

Police confirmed that a “four figure sum of money” was taken.

The next morning saw a similar sum of cash taken from the community hub at Brookwood Library, in Bearsden.

And in a separate incident intruders left empty-handed after a recent break-in at Milngavie Library.

In a statement East Dunbartonshire Council said it was “temporarily stopping cash payments at its three community hubs until further notice”.

However, members of the public can make cash payments at the council’s registration offices in Kirkintilloch (Southbank Road) and Bearsden (Roman Road), and at the Lennoxtown housing office (Main Street).

Ann Davie, the council’s director of customer services, said: “We would ask our customers to be aware of these new arrangements as we review hub processes in light of recent events.”

Meanwhile, police are continuing their investigations into the break-ins.

Inspector Keith Bartlett, Communities Inspector for Police Scotland, said: “We are currently investigating break-ins which occurred to the hubs within East Dunbartonshire.

“We would be grateful for any information from the public to be passed on to Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 in confidence or alternatively call 101.”

SNP councillor Anne McNair has slammed the council for not taking action after the first break-in.

She said: “The break-in at Bishopbriggs Library should have served as a warning to the council of the importance of protecting cash collection points. Why was the lesson not learned?

“To have suffered one theft is bad enough in itself, but to have such a theft repeated not just once but twice within such a short space of time is completely outrageous.

“Following the break-in at Bishopbriggs Library steps should have been taken, as a matter of urgency, to tighten the security at all other council cash collection facilities.”