A NURSERY set to open in just over a month has suffered a major setback after being targeted twice in just one week by “scum” who ripped out high-value copper pipes.
The new Town and Country Kiddies building in Kilnwell Road, Market Rasen was almost complete when thieves organised two separate overnight raids on the nursery.
The vandals ripped out all the piping from the walls causing a terrible flood and damaging the ceilings, just days after making off with copper piping for a new radiators.
The nursery has now been forced to call in a security company to install CCTV cameras and an alarm system linked to the police station to help catch the criminals.
Nursery manager Margaret Reeves said: “I’m absolutely disgusted that anyone could do this, it’s a disgrace.
“This is a children’s nursery, to give the children the best possible start in life – this is having an impact on the community.
“It is a major set back for us – the place had just been decorated and we’re going to have to do it all again.
“We need people to know about this. We want to catch the offenders so they can be prosecuted and need residents to alert the police if they see any suspicious behaviour.”
The new £250,000 Town and Country Kiddies nursery, in the former children’s home Ashleigh House, will provide 66 extra childcare places – more than doubling its existing number of spaces and dramatically reduce a waiting list which has about 71 names on it.
Builder Peter Jeffery of JJ Building Services, which is carrying out the renovations, said: “Whoever did this is scum, they need a good hiding.
“I don’t think the nursery will be open in time now.”
A Lincolnshire Police spokesman said this was an increasing problem due to the increase in scrap value for copper and lead.
The spokesman said: “We would urge businesses to review their security and consider investing in things like security lighting, alarms and CCTV systems.
“Lincolnshire Police is treating metal theft as a force priority and a number of arrests have been made in recent months.
“Despite this the issue is ongoing and early reporting of suspicious activity is vital.”
Anyone who sees any suspicious people or vehicles should call Lincolnshire Police on 101.