Thieves leave Harold Hill special needs children without minibus

A club for children with special needs was forced to cancel their trips last week after thieves stole the catalytic converter from two of their minibuses including one that had just returned after a earlier theft.

Children at Ravensbourne School in Neave Crescent, Harold Hill were forced to miss out on their trip after their minibuses were targeted last Thursday August 4.

Administration officer and Treasurer, Denise Simpkins said: “I think it is despicable and I am really angry that these people could do something like this to disabled children.

“The only ones that are going to suffer is the children.”

The workers at the school, for children with multiple learning disabilities came in on Thursday morning to find that the exhausts from the buses had been left in the middle of the playground.

The club was forced to cancel the trip that was due to take place on that day and had to make alternative arrangements for the children to be taken to and from school.

Denise said: “I think it’s terrible that the kids have had to miss out on their trip just because some selfish person has done this.

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“It’s hard enough as it is to take children with disabilities out but this has just made it even harder.”

The school was originally targeted by the thieves about six weeks ago when they stole the catalytic converter from one of their minibuses.

The minibus, which costs �15,000 had just been returned on Wednesday after being repaired when the thieves struck again.

Staff at the school now fear that they may be forced to cancel their trips in September if the minibuses are not returned in time after being repaired.

Denise said: “I think it is despicable that someone would do this once, but it is ridiculous that when the minibus comes back after being repaired that they do it again.

“I just want justice and for these people to be punished for what they did to these kids.”

A police spokesman said: “We have been made aware of the theft of catalytic convertors from two vehicles within the school premises.

“Our Safer Neighbourhood team are now investigating and will be working with the school to obtain CCTV imagery.”

Anyone who has any information relating to this incident should call the Heaton Safer neighbourhood Team on 0208 721 2795.