AN attempted break-in at The Fusilier Museum has caused £6,000 worth of damage.

Mindless yobs struck overnight Tuesday - just weeks before the museum's big reopening after it was shut for 15 months ago with the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Staff at the museum discovered the damage to the entrance doors as they arrived on Wednesday morning.

Fortunately, the high-security doors prevented the offender from getting inside, but the damage means the museum is facing an extra cost it can ill afford as its income stream stopped when it shut in line with lockdown restrictions

Operations manager Gemma Laverick told The Bury Times: "The doors are made of specially made glass and the mechanism of the door has been damaged too.

"We have been in touch with the insurance company and are hopeful they will be able to cover the cost, but we will still have to pay the excess money which we do not have."

She added: "It is really upsetting for all the staff ­— it is disrespectful to the history and the sacrifice made."

But Gemma refused to left this week's upsetting events derail plans for their opening on June 26.

She said: "We are really excited about reopening the museum and have chosen to do it on June 26 because it is Armed Forces Day and wanted to make it a special day for the town."

The Fusilier Museum is home to the collections of XX The Lancashire Fusiliers and The Royal Regiment of Fusiliers.

It documents over 300 years of history and heritage through permanent and temporary exhibitions, and tells the fascinating stories of the people who have served and continue to serve in the regiments.

As a charitable trust it relies heavily on income from visitors to the museum and the café as well as school visits and corporate events ­— activities which had to be stopped as the country battle Covid-19.

The town centre museum started a fundraising campaign last year to see it though the pandemic. Now some of the money will have to be spent on covering the cost of having the doors repaired.

The crowdfunding appeal will stay open as the museum ­— like many other arts and cultural organisations ­­— now try to get on a more secure footing financially.

Gemma thanked everyone who had donated.

"People have been very generous, many people have a connection to the museum and have donated. The Fusiliers have a long connection with the town ­— it's part of the history of the town" said Gemma, "Every donation will make such a difference."

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