Supermarket bosses are looking at new ways to protect its staff and stores following a spate of raids.

The East of England Co-op store along Swan Street, Sible Hedingham, was the latest store to be burgled last week.

Cigarettes and alcohol were stolen during the overnight raid.

The East of England Co-op insists it is doing all it can to prevent similar incidents from occurring following concerns about the number of ram raids, armed robberies and burglaries at its stores around Essex and Suffolk.

A spokesman said: “We take the welfare of our colleagues very seriously and are always looking at new ways of protecting our colleagues and stores.

“Our state-of-the-art alarm receiving centre enables us to monitor each of our stores 24 hours a day, which ensures assistance arrives as quickly as possible.

“We have also increased our in-store security presence, along with other security measures, and are working closely with police.”

James Hamilton, 18, was charged by Essex Police in connection with last week’s burglary at the Co-op on Swan Street.

He was also charged with two other offences relating to another incident on March 26 in Stradbroke, Suffolk.

He is set to appear at Chelmsford Crown Court on Wednesday, April 25.

East of England Co-op has confirmed it is still offering a £40,000 reward for information relating to ram raids on its stores throughout the last 18 months.

Branches in Halstead, Sible Hedingham and Earls Colne were all targeted by gangs last year who stole ATM machines from the shops.

Essex Police confirmed there have been no arrests.

Anyone with information about the ram raids or other incidents at the stores should contact Braintree Police Station on 101.