School fights back after break-in

A NIGHTMARE break-in today has a happy ending for one Ipswich school.Staff at Handford Hall Primary School, Gatacre Road went to work yesterday only to find the school had been broken into, two CD players taken and several classrooms trashed.

A NIGHTMARE break-in today has a happy ending for one Ipswich school.

Staff at Handford Hall Primary School, Gatacre Road went to work yesterday only to find the school had been broken into, two CD players taken and several classrooms trashed.

But the nightmare had a happy ending after the local Sainsbury store donated two CD players.

One of the stolen CD players was also spotted by a keen-sighted passer by, who returned it to the school.

Head teacher Jon Trotter said: "People broke into the school and trashed three of the classrooms – the classrooms for our youngest children in reception and years one and two. They also broke the nursery doors.

"We had two brand new CD players that were taken. A tank with tadpoles in was smashed, files were kicked around and other things were trashed.

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"The caretaker was here until 2am and teachers were clearing up in the morning.

"Year two had to move into a different classroom – and they were doing their SATs."

But there was a happy ending – thanks to the help shown by the community.

Mr Trotter said: "Sainsbury gave us two CD players and a young man came in with one of our CD players. He had found it in the wasteland near the river in Yarmouth Road.

"It makes me feel really good - it restores your faith in the community."

Mark Thompson, duty manager for Sainsbury, Hadleigh Road, said he had been asked if the school could borrow CD players as the children needed them for their SATs.

He said: "I just thought that to save them the hassle, we would donate them. We donated two CD players. We do a lot of work with local schools and organisations, so it was nice to be able to help out when the school was in difficulty."

Police had been called to the scene around 10.10pm on Monday .

Mr Trotter said the police are automatically contacted when the school's alarm is activated.

A spokeswoman for Suffolk police said four Ipswich boys had been arrested after the break-in.

The two 16-year-olds, one 15-year-old and one 14-year-old are bailed to return to Ipswich police station on June 5.

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