SCRATCH cards worth around £800 have been stolen in a smash and grab this morning in Dursley.

The unknown offender smashed through a glass pane at the front entrance to Baileys post office on Long Street at around 4am, crawled inside and took the scratch card dispenser.

The store, which usually opens at 9am today, remains closed as Gloucestershire Police carry out an investigation at the crime scene.

Owner Nick Priest said the store had an attempted break in on Sunday but that had proved unsuccessful.

"It is the inconvenience more than anything. The time and effort to deal with the insurance claim and what have you, it is not something someone can easily do in a day," he said.

"We will be open shortly once the police have finished."

Mr Priest added that in 15 years of running the store he had never seen anything like it and was concerned that he may have to put steel shutters up.

"I think the moment you have to put steel shutters up it sends the wrong message about the town but sometimes it is taken out of your hands by the insurers,” he said.