A Colne primary school has been targeted by vandals for the second time in just six months, with the Assistant Headteacher calling the whole affair “sad”.
In March, Lord Street Primary School invested in a brand new polytunnel, which is a polythene greenhouse used by the children to learn about horticulture, only for their new outdoor classroom to be damaged over the Easter holidays.
With the original culprit having punched a series of holes in the side of the polytunnel, vandals have once again punctured the material, carrying out their senseless attack over the weekend of the 9th and 10th of September.
Coming just six months after the original act of vandalism, the school was dismayed to find the damage this time was far worse.
The recurring incidents have led the school’s Assistant Headteacher, Hannah Hutchinson, to admit that while the school has material to fix the polytunnel, they are “reluctant” because it could be attacked again.
“They’ve literally gone through it, you can see a whole body has gone through,” said Hannah. “As soon as we patch it up, they’re just going to come back.
“Our shed was broken into as well and the strimmer’s gone,” she added. “I was half expecting something to have happened over the holidays.
“It’s just sad people are like that,” Hannah continued.
With Community Officers having attended the scene, the damage to Lord Street’s polytunnels is so extensive the school is now looking to hold some fundraising events to allow them to install CCTV.
“The kids are fuming, they’re saying: ‘It’s not fair, we need to do something, they’re spoiling our work,’” Hannah said. “They were asking why it had happened. They’re cross, so we’re talking about doing posters saying ‘stay out of our school.’
“We had tomato plants inside, and they’ve ripped down some of the tomato canes,” Hannah said of the incident. “It’s obviously just some teenagers mucking around.”
The school’s polytunnel has allowed the children to take part in the Forest School project - spearheaded by Carole England, whose grandson is in Year 3 - through which they have been learning about growing plants twice a week.
“The children go out and learn and they absolutely love it there,” Hannah explained. “We’ve had huge pumpkins, corn on the cob, peppers, potatoes, strawberries, raspberries, all sorts.
“It’s been great, and it’s been down to Carole England, one of our children’s grandparents: she’s been fab.”