…By Lola Smith for TDPel Media.
A caretaker at Gladstone Primary Academy in Longton, Stoke-on-Trent, describes the continuous acts of vandalism carried out by a group of trespassers as a nightmarish situation.
Kenneth Wooldridge faces the daunting task of clearing the aftermath of destruction before the students arrive.
Relentless Attacks on School Property
Over the course of the past year, the school has been subjected to relentless vandalism attacks.
The most recent incident targeted a large sculpture of a giant on the school’s playground, causing severe damage.
This ongoing spree of destruction has taken a toll on the school’s already limited budget.
Disgusting Acts and Unsanitary Conditions
Kenneth has encountered unsettling incidents while dealing with the aftermath.
Trespassers have left behind human waste in areas where young children play.
The caretaker expresses his disgust at the need to clean and disinfect these areas repeatedly.
Such unsanitary actions create an additional burden for the school staff.
Endless Destruction and Chaos
The past year has witnessed a range of destructive acts against the school property.
Instances include taps left running, broken windscreens on minibuses, stolen scooters, and vandalized sheds.
The trespassers exhibit no restraint, damaging everything that is repaired or replaced.
They scatter toys and equipment across the playgrounds, leaving chaos in their wake.
Unsettling Vandalism and Emotional Impact
The vandals go beyond mere destruction; they deface the playground equipment with graffiti and leave false names that point towards individuals associated with the school.
The most recent act of vandalism during a bank holiday severely damaged a stone statue known as the “Gladstone Giant.”
Its face was obliterated, causing distress among the children who struggle to comprehend the extent of the damage.
Identifying the Culprits and Seeking Community Support
Although CCTV footage has captured the vandals, estimated to be between 11 and 15 years old, identifying them has proven impossible so far.
In response, Gladstone Primary Academy has invested in a new CCTV system to aid in identifying the perpetrators.
The school has also reached out to the surrounding community, urging them to report any suspicious activities to the police.
Plea for Community Vigilance
The school’s headteacher, Elaine Preston, emphasizes the escalating severity of the vandalism incidents and their impact on both the children and the school’s stretched budget.
She implores the community to act as the school’s eyes and ears, reporting any suspicious activity to the authorities during closure.
A Call for Help and Ongoing Investigation
Kenneth expresses hope that someone in the community holds crucial information to stop the vandalism.
As the school is surrounded by houses, he urges residents to come forward.
The police confirm their ongoing investigation into the incidents and provide contact information for reporting any relevant details or evidence anonymously.
In conclusion, Gladstone Primary Academy has been plagued by a series of destructive acts carried out by a group of vandals, causing significant distress, financial strain, and unsanitary conditions.
The school seeks the support of the community and invests in improved security measures to deter future incidents.