Shop owners ‘depressed’ and ‘gutted’ after Ipswich town centre premises ‘smashed by metal pole’

The smashed window at Bedwells Florists.

The smashed window at Bedwells Florists.

Independent shop owners have spoken of their anguish after a number of premises were significantly damaged in Ipswich’s town centre.

The smashed window at Gentlemans Relish hairdressers.

The smashed window at Gentlemans Relish hairdressers.

Officers were called to the town centre in the early hours of this morning after receiving a report from a member of the public that a man was “smashing windows with a metal pole”, police said.

Damage was caused to windows at Bowmans Bar and Lounge in Queen Street, Belvoir estate agents and Ipswich Crown Pools in Crown Street, and haart estate agents, Gentlemans Relish hairdressers and Mecca Bingo in Lloyds Avenue.

Iceland supermarket at Sailmakers and premises in Northgate Street, including Tennial Personnel and Bedwells Florists, were also damaged at around 5am.

Officers arrested a 25-year-old man, of no fixed abode, on suspicion of criminal damage and possession of an offensive weapon. He was taken to the Martlesham Police Investigation Centre where he is set to be questioned. There are no other suspects and there were no injuries, police said.

Ann Burtenshaw, one of the partners at Bedwells Florists, which began trading in 1946, was visibly upset at the damage caused.

She said: “It is depressing. We are going to have board up the Christmas window.

“We heard about what happened on Facebook and came straight down. I just feel like crying. Our message to everyone is that we are still open and accepting orders.”

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Mark Partridge, manager of Gentlemans Relish hairdressers, who was sweeping away broken shards of glass, said: “I am gutted. We are only an independent business and are nice and busy at this time of year. But we are still open as usual and we hope to have the window fully repaired very soon.”

Jenna Bryenton, joint owner of Belvoir estate agents, said: “We are surprised by what’s happened and it is really disappointing for smaller businesses affected at this time of year.”

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