Hope hit by thieves again
6:00pm Saturday 19th October 2013 in News
A Southwick wildlife charity has been targeted by thieves for the second time in a month, with thousands of pounds worth of equipment stolen.
A workshop at Hope Nature Centre, in Frome Road, was broken into last Thursday night.
A John Deere X125 ride-on mower, worth £2,000, a 7ft wooden walled trailer, worth £1,500, and power tools were taken.
In September, a four-year-old tortoise, Pepper, was stolen, along with tools worth about £1,500.
Hope Nature Centre has a variety of animals and provides work for young people with learning difficulties.
Chairman Tom James said: “It is difficult to think that they could do this to a charity. It beggars belief that this could happen.”
Thieves cut chains on the workshop to get in. They later left in the direction of Studley Green.
Wiltshire Police have not ruled out the possibility of both crimes being related. Inspector Lisette Harvey said: “We find offenders who prey on organisations like charities to be particularly unsavoury.”
The charity intends to review security, but may need grants and support from the community.
Mr James, former Trow-bridge mayor, said: “I don’t know what we can do, other than concreting around the whole site.”
After the first break-in, Wiltshire Times readers George and Sue Moffet donated two tortoises, so young visitors would not be disappointed.
Mr James said: “There’s so many nice people who want to help us.”
Witnesses can call 101 and ask for PC1964 Lawson.
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