School head protest at vandals

VANDALS have struck again at Stowmarket Middle School – this time causing £150-worth of damage.The latest incident, which happened between 5.10pm on July 24 and 7.

VANDALS have struck again at Stowmarket Middle School – this time causing £150-worth of damage.

The latest incident, which happened between 5.10pm on July 24 and 7.30am on July 25, saw diesel poured over building sand and a bin set alight. The damage was where a new music room is being constructed at the Walnut Tree Walk school.

It comes just one month after three boys caused £19,800-worth of damage to the premises. Two 11-year-olds and one ten-year-old pleaded guilty to the offence and have been prosecuted.

Police, who are not linking the offences, have promised to step up patrols around school buildings. A spokesman said: "Suffolk police treats any act of vandalism extremely seriously and, with the school holidays upon us, we'll be keeping an extra eye on school properties.


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"We would like to appeal for anyone living near a school property to report any suspicious activity to Suffolk police using the 999 system."

Tom Scherb, Suffolk County Council's western area education manager, added: "Obviously we're concerned about vandalism of this kind to school premises and we would encourage anyone with information about it to contact the police."

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Anyone with information about the crime is asked to call Pc Sally Parkes on 01284 774100 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.

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Sue Hull, headteacher at the 310 pupil Needham Market Middle School, is also frustrated about vandalism, which has cost £3,000 in 12 weeks. Vandals have damaged cricket nets, windows, fencing and doors.

Mrs Hull said: "We have to put a lot of time and energy in to this and have plenty to do without chasing up repairs. Now a lot of things to do with education that we might be doing are not getting done, or are spilling over to another time.

"Only last night there were ten individuals climbing on the school roof. On Wednesday night I dialled 999, I was at a function at the community centre and during an interval came back to school and saw people on the roof and on the school site. They are adolescents, not our pupils, they are older than that.

"We have put CCTV in and are hopeful we can identify the culprits. We also have a very active neighbourhood watch scheme and people will be keeping an eye on the school during the holidays."

Anyone with any information about vandalism at the Needham Market school should contact Pc Paul Elding on 01284 774100.

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