Restaurant owners left demoralised after vandals attack their premises

Chris Greenwood and Debbie Taylor of Denmans Restaurant in Shelf.
Chris Greenwood and Debbie Taylor of Denmans Restaurant in Shelf.

The owners of a new restaurant in Shelf say they fear vandals will target their business again after two attacks in their first two months.

Denmans restaurant on Wade House Road opened on February 8, but the glass in the front door was smashed in one attack at the end of February, before another attack in the early hours of Tuesday morning saw the internal glass smashed and a speaker being stolen.

Owners Chris Greenwood and Debbie Taylor, who live above the restaurant, say they now fear the same thing happening every night and have trouble sleeping.

Chris said: “It sounded like a war kicking off downstairs. It was horrific.

“The alarms went off and the lights all came on, which must have scared them off.

“They didn’t take any cash because we don’t keep any on the premises - everyone pays by card these days.

“But it will cost us about £2,500 for the repairs.

“I have to say the response of the police was excellent. There were four units here within minutes.

“I just think it’s demoralising for a new business. We’ve put short of £100,000 developing this building and making it something good for the area, but you’ve got a minority of people doing something like this.

“Unless they catch them red-handed then the police can’t do much.

“Every unit on our parade of shops has been hit like this. There’s a massive problem in this area and the police are aware of it, but they’ve got limited resources.

“The police are doing all they can but I think there needs to be more funding for patrols and intelligence has to be used more.

When asked what he thought of whoever was responsible for the attacks, Chris said: “They’re destroying the area. What right have they got to steal from us?

“But we’ve had hundreds and hundreds of messages of support and people wanting to help, which has been fantastic.”

In a statement, West Yorkshire Police said: “Police are appealing for information following a burglary at a restaurant in Shelf.

“The incident happened in the early hours of 10 April, at around 4am on Wade House Road.

“Suspects approached the front door to the premises and used a large stone to cause damage to a window panel and gained entry.

“The occupants of the premises heard the windows being damaged and disturbed the suspects, who fled the scene taking a speaker.

“Anyone with any information about this incident is asked to contact the police via 101 quoting crime reference number 13180167690.”