THIEVES have raided a Rossendale riding school for the third time in 12 months.

Staff at Fearns Equestrian Centre, in Fearns Road, Stacksteads discovered the centre had been ransacked on Tuesday morning when they arrived to open up.

Yard manager Tori Brown, 30, said: “I locked up on Monday night and everything was quiet.

“When I came in on Tuesday morning the main gate was locked but when I got to the office building I noticed all the locks were lined up neatly on the floor and the door was open. They must have brought a socket set with them to remove the locks.

“This is the third break-in we have had in 12 months. The last time we were broken into somebody took off all the stable doors and cost hundreds of pounds to put them all back on.

“This time they have ironically stolen the hard-drive for our new CCTV equipment. We got the equipment after the last break-in to try and deter thieves but obviously this hasn’t happened.

“We appeal for anyone who knows anything to about the break ins to call the police. Luckily, this time the crime scene people were able to find a series of footprints.”

Fearns Equestrian Centre was opened by Brian Robertson and his business partner Kay Thompson-Cropper in September 2010.

The centre provides riding lessons for disadvantaged and disabled children as well as pupils from Fearns Community High School.

A Police spokesman said: “We are aware thieves have broke into Fearns Equestrian Centre between 6pm on Monday and 9am Tuesday and stolen part of the centre’s CCTV equipment.

“We are now investigating the incident and appeal to anyone with information to call us on 101 or Crimestoppers.”