A sneak thief has “stolen from the children” after making off with £200 from an annual schools charity concert at St Mary’s church.
The thief stole a cash box containing a £150 float and £50 from ticket sales just an hour before the Rotary Club’s annual schools concert began on Tuesday.
He made a dash for the money as club members were setting up in the church around 5,30pm.
The thief was then pursued on foot by an eager volunteer who chased him through the town centre before discovering the discarded and empty cash box on the floor.
Jackie Crampton from the charity club, which raises around £2,000 each year from the event to put into schools, said while the offender got away, they are confident in tracking him down.
She said: “There were a lot of witnesses and CCTV footage so we are hopeful about police finding whoever did this.
“All the proceeds from the concert go straight to schools and this will really affect them.
“Nobody was hurt luckily, but the man who collects the money was very shaken and it was quite traumatic for him.
“It has just left a bad taste, this is stealing from the children which is very sad.”
John Fletcher, who chased after the thief, said the £200 loss will directly affect the club’s donations to town schools this year.
All money raised each year is put back into teaching and equipment for music across Warwick’s schools
Money has previously paid for tuition, a keyboard for Ridgeway School and instruments for Newburgh pupils.
The annual Midsummer Concert is supported by the County Music Service and once again filled the church on Tuesday evening.