Ramraiders who struck at an Aldi store in Chatteris are believed to have made off towards St Ives after stealing a cash machine.

Now police are stepping up night-time patrols to protect other vulnerable locations in the county.

A gang of men used a stolen Land Rover Defender to smash their way through the front entrance of the shop in Bridge Street at 3.50am on Monday and removed a cash machine.

Police said the gang fled the scene in what was believed to be a dark coloured Volkswagen Golf and were last seen on the B1040 at Somersham heading in the St Ives direction.

Officers are working closely with the Eastern Region Special Operations Unit (ERSOU) in relation to the series of this type of offence in an effort to establish any links.

Detective Sergeant Mark Plitsch said: “I'd appeal to anyone who has information about this incident to get in touch as a matter of urgency.

“In addition to tracing the Volkswagen Golf, we would like to speak to the driver of a light coloured hatchback seen to be circling the A141 Slade End roundabout at the time of the offence to eliminate them from our enquiries. We have a partial registration plate of SR16.”

Det Sgt Plitsch said: “Overnight patrols have been stepped up in the area and at other vulnerable locations. We ask that people remain vigilant and report any suspicious activity around cash machine locations.”

Anyone with information regarding this incident should call police on 101 quoting CF0054390118 or visit www.cambs.police.uk/report. Alternatively, contact Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555111 or via www.crimestoppers-uk.org.