An ATM could be installed in the front of an early 16th century building.

Permission has been sought from Epping Forest District Council to install a cash machine in Best One at 109 High Street, Ongar.

The building is timber framed and Grade II listed, dating back to the 16th century with 18th century alterations.

In the application Jan Clark, from Notemachine UK Ltd, wrote: "The components and materials proposed are sympathetic to both Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas as used across Notemachine Estate.

"The development will be limited to the specified areas and leave adjacent structures and features untouched.

"This will be the only visible change to the appearance of the building.

"The proposal is to identify the facilities already available to the local and broader community at this location, with minimal impact upon the Building or the surrounding Conservation area."

While the installation should leave the listed building largely unaltered, it may make a stretch of otherwise ATM-free Ongar High Street a target for cash machine thieves.

In the past year Theydon Bois Tesco and a bank in Epping High Street have been targeted, with a large digger and a gas explosion used respectively to dislodge the ATMs.

From 2013 to 2018 in Epping Forest there have been 59 ATM and safe thefts, according to data obtained through a Freedom of Information Request.

Despite the often dramatic nature of the crime, it is not a particularly lucrative one.

Slightly more than £50,000 was taken across the incidents, meaning each individual theft was worth £857.

However, once a £35,000 2014 job is taken out of the equation, the average take home for safe and ATM thefts in Epping Forest falls to £268.