Vandals trashed a Garstang school’s play area and then scrawled “sorry” in the sand.
The apology added insult to injury for Garstang Community Primary School head Mrs Steph Reeves and staff.
They returned to work on Monday to discover the much loved reception outdoor area for youngest pupils had been wrecked over the weekend.
Mrs Reeves said: “I think it’s just bored youths. They just got in and trashed it, throwing sand and tyres around. They’d thrown the sandpit (contents) all over the floor and then written the word sorry in it. Nothing was broken, but that’s not the point.”
Posting on social media the school had a clear message for the vandals: “So awful to return to school after the weekend to find that our reception outdoor area has been wrecked over the weekend. This is the area our four and five year olds love, and our staff have worked hard to create. How sad that some mindless people find spoiling it a bit of fun. Writing ‘sorry’ in the sand you threw all over the floor doesn’t make it one bit better.”
The school has since received many offers of help.
Order was restored by staff before pupils saw the damage. Mrs Reeves said: “ We cleared it up. It probably took half an hour, but that half hour should be time when teacher are preparing lessons.”
She is concerned about future vandalism, as the school recently won a £10,000 Lottery award to transform another outside area.
The play area was created some 10 years ago and Mrs Reeves said: “The children absolutely love it. We’re currently working towards the Lancashire County Council’s Step Outdoors quality mark so we had really developed it over the past year. There’s a fairy garden, small world play and parents had made things.”
She has a direct message for those involved in the destruction: “I’d say think back to their primary school years and how much they enjoyed their environment. If they want something to do
I’m sure we could find them something to do, some gardening or work. We do have fantastic students who come here on work placements and really enjoy themselves. If you’re 16 or 17 and it’s years since you’ve been in primary school they come back and they love it. Perhaps these could do with trying something like a working placement in a primary school to just remind themselves.”
She also had another message for the vandals: “Please think about if it was your little brother or sister in that (reception) class.”
For its next outdoor project the school is looking forward to transforming its outdoor theatre area.
Mrs Reeves said: “We’re going to make it into a quiet space called ‘Time To Talk’.”