Thugs rip through Ceara using huge dumper truck

Ceara School principal, Dr Peter Cunningham at the area of foundations and drains which have to be rebuilt. INLM33-118gc
Ceara School principal, Dr Peter Cunningham at the area of foundations and drains which have to be rebuilt. INLM33-118gc

Three thugs went on the rampage causing thousands of pounds of damage to Ceara Special School using a six tonne dumper truck.

The teenage hooligans stole the truck which was being used to build a much needed extension and ripped through fencing, smashing pots and pulverising the foundations.

The gang broke into the school grounds in Sloan Avenue between 6.30pm and 9.30pm on Monday.

They jump started a massive yellow dumper truck and went on the rampage through wooden fences, ripping up lawns and causing severe damage to the foundations of the new £500,000 extension.

School principal Dr Peter Cunningham said what he found difficult to forgive was the uprooting of precious trees planted in memory of pupils who had passed away.

He told the Mail he wanted the teenagers involved in the vandalism to visit the school and meet the children.

He said the school will still open as normal in September but classes may have to double up until the work is completed.

One of the male vandals is described as being between 5’4”-5’6” tall, wearing a black hoody and black tracksuit bottoms. Another suspect was approximately 5’7” tall, wearing a red hoody and dark tracksuit bottoms. The third assailant is approximately 5’11”-6’1” tall and wore a green hoody with grey tracksuit bottoms.

Dr Cunningham said: “I’m absolutely horrified at the considerable damage. This is a special school and the parents have enough to deal with without this added annoyance. It’s an attack on the local community. Work on an extension which we have long campaigned for, costing over £500,000 will now have to be put back at least three weeks.”

Dr Cunningham was also upset that on the day he discovered the vandalism he attended the funeral of Helen McElroy, a former governor and campaigner for Ceara. Police are asking anyone with information to contact them at Lurgan on 0845 600 8000.