Bosses behind a foodbank are 'absolutely devastated' after vandals broke into the building and caused thousands of pounds of damage.

Officers are appealing for information after Barrow Foodbank in Abbey Road was broken into at the weekend.

Cumbria police were contacted by the foodbank, based in Abbey Road Baptist Church, on Monday regarding a break-in during which a substantial amount of damage was caused.

A side external window had been smashed and some money was also taken from the building.

Damage was also caused to piping leading to water damage elsewhere on the property.

Claire Coulthurst, project manager at Barrow Foodbank, said the team are had been left disappointed following the incident – but are 'happy' no food was taken or damaged during the break-in.

She said: "Myself, staff, trustees and volunteers at Barrow Foodbank are absolutely devastated that the break-in occurred and the inconvenience it has caused within the warehouse.

"The perpetrators have caused thousands of pounds worth of damage but I am happy to report that no food was taken or damaged which we consider a huge blessing.

"Luckily, it hasn't stopped all operations and we have been able to keep distributing food to those in need, but as we are still dealing with the aftermath within the warehouse it would be really appreciated if donors could refrain from bringing large donations directly to the foodbank this week while we continue the clean-up.

"I would encourage anyone with any information regarding the break-in to contact the police immediately."

Earlier this week, foodbank bosses announced that disruptions would be expected at their vital service due to 'an unforeseen incident'.

A spokesman said: "Unfortunately, due to an unforeseen incident at the foodbank, there may be some disruption in service this week.

"Please can supporters delay from making donations this week, we should be able to receive these again next week.

"The drop-in for food collection will still be open as usual, food deliveries may be impacted, but the team will discuss this individually with any affected clients."

Cumbria police are keen to hear from anyone with knowledge of the incident and those responsible.

Anyone with information can contact the police, quoting incident number 42 of November 22.

They can also phone 101 or, alternatively, can contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.