VOLUNTEERS at Newquay’s museum have been left disillusioned after a thief allegedly made off with donations.

The Cornish cultural hub at Central House in Crantock Street was targeted on Wednesday, June 19, at about 3.45pm.

It was reported that the thief managed to steal notes from a collection box, which helps keep the museum operating, but left coins after being disturbed by volunteers.

Len Sheppard, the chairman of Newquay Old Cornwall Society, said: “Volunteers are feeling rather disheartened with our cash box broken intoand cash stolen.

“Fortunately, he was disturbed whilst carrying out his crime but how disappointing that a charity with so few volunteers doing their best for Newquay has been robbed.

“I do not know how much the thief has got away with and it’s probably not a huge amount as the cash box was recently emptied.

“But what we would like to highlight to other places that have charity boxes is that someone might come along and grab them.

“What it has brought home to use is that we will have to look at other ways of getting donations. Towan Vintage who share our building have kindly set up a Sumup QR code link on behalf of Newquay Museum as we have had enquiries how to donate, which can be found on our Facebook and website.

“There are only four volunteers and so we don’t have time to fundraise.”

The theft has come at a “bad” time for the Newquay Old Cornwall Society, which runs Newquay Museum, as they are in the process of moving their archive into the facility.

Newquay Town Council instructed the society to vacate the room it has rented from Cornwall Council at the Municipal Offices in Marcus Hill to store thousands of original documents, photographs and maps for the past 30 years.

Volunteers also feel the museum gets little support from the community.

Len said: “We have just been turfed out of our storeroom so it’s already a bad time for us.

“We are moving the archive into the museum storeroom. We have got enough space, but it is tight. We have a fantastic collection that is growing but Newquay people are not interested in the museum, which has left us disillusioned about the local support we get.

“Over the past month we have had more German people through the doors than local people so what we do is a positive thing for the town’s tourism.”

Museum staff provided a description of the alleged thief — a man in his mid 50s to 60s. He had a rucksack, metal type walking stick, black framed glasses, was balding and had a light tan. The man was wearing shorts and a dark blue or green t-shirt.