Published: 14:00, 24 October 2021
| Updated: 12:34, 25 October 2021
A Co-op store was forced to close this morning after the branch was raided in the early hours.
Thieves swiped a charity box, bottles of alcohol and vaping accessories during the burglary in Station Road, Westgate-on-Sea.
Police were called to the scene near the village's railway station shortly after 3am today after alarms were activated at the shop.
A spokesman for the force said: "Officers attended and found entry had been gained after a door was damaged and forced open.
"It is reported that a charity box was stolen along with bottles of alcohol and a number of vaping accessories.
"An investigation is ongoing, including forensic checks at the scene and CCTV inquiries."
Pictures on social media show the automatic entrance door has been boarded up after it was damaged during the raid.
The store was shut this morning because of the incident but has since reopened.