Thieves have escaped with tens of thousands of pounds worth of photographic gear in raids on both branches of Castle Cameras, within days of each other.

Robbers smashed their way into Castle Cameras’ Salisbury store on 18 November.

The same thieves appear to have struck Castle Cameras’ Bournemouth outlet four days later – leading managers to conclude that the business has fallen victim to organised raids.

Commenting on the Bournemouth break-in, which took place on Saturday, Castle Cameras added: ‘Despite heavy security, the thieves still managed to gain access to the store and once again stole tens of thousands of pounds’ worth of cameras and lenses.’

Salisbury store manager Jim Bray told Amateur Photographer that the culprits escaped with Nikon cameras and Canon lenses by ‘clearing a couple of shelves’.

Bray added that staff are still assessing the losses, and may be able to issue a list of serial numbers of stolen gear once this is done.

‘These two raids have caused much distress and have had a significant impact on our normal day-to-day business,’ Castle Cameras said on its website.

‘During the next few days, please bear with us as we try to take stock, rebuild and get our business back on track.

‘The police and insurers are investigating, but if you have any information about the raids, or hear of camera kits being sold new, boxed and cheap in the local area please get in touch or contact the police.’

The Bournemouth store can be contacted on 01202 526 606; and the Salisbury shop on 01722 339 909.

Castle Cameras was formed in 1974, having previously been a pharmacy called Callow Chemist, dating back to 1938.