STAFF and volunteers at the Primrose Hospice have been left shocked and appalled after burglars forced their way into the charity’s garden sheds, breaking locks and stealing £200 worth of gardening equipment.
The incident, which saw tools and hosepipes taken, happened overnight between Monday (August 15) and Tuesday.
Before that – between August 3 and 4 – another attempt was made to break into a shed at the hospice. On that occasion damage was caused but nothing was taken.
The equipment was used by volunteers to maintain the tranquil gardens which are enjoyed by the patients, who have life-limiting illnesses, and their families.
Helen Briscoe, the charity’s chief executive officer, described the thieves as ‘the lowest of the low’ and said everyone at the hospice was shocked and saddened by their actions.
“Who can steal from a charity especially one that supports people at the end of their life?
“We are fortunate to have beautiful grounds at the hospice and it is an important part of our environment.”
She added many people who used the garden would go there to be amongst nature when they were struggling to come to terms with their illness.
“Children affected by losing a parent can play and take part in activities outdoors so it is a really precious space.
“All our garden maintenance is done by a fantastic team of dedicated volunteers who come week in and week out to tend the grounds no matter what the weather is. They keep the lawns cut and the borders looking splendid.”
“They do need equipment to keep the gardens looking so lovely and it is very sad that someone can steal from us in this way.”
A West Mercia Police spokesperson confirmed they were called to the incident and urged any witnesses or anyone with any information to call officers on 101 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.
PC Gregor Moorman from Bromsgrove South and Rural Safer Neighbourhood Team commented: “It’s particularly upsetting that thieves would target a local charity in this way by stealing from them.”
Visit www.primrosehospice.org or call 01527 871051 for more on the Primrose Hospice.