Council unite to condemn the Ceara vandalism

Ceara School principal, Dr Peter Cunningham
Ceara School principal, Dr Peter Cunningham

Members of Craigavon Borough Council have united to condemn last week’s vandalism at Ceara School.

Councillor Joe Nelson, a member of the school’s Board of Governors, said it was a special school for special children.

He said: “The vandalism will set the project back for up to six weeks. There are 125 pupils, ranging in age from three to 19, and it was originally designed for 45.”

He hoped that those who did the damage would be brought to court.

“I spoke to the principal and he asked me to pass on his thanks to the community at large for the words of support and encouragement he has received,” he added.

“Ceara over the last 12 months has hosted 100 children for visits and work experience and the thugs who did this are not representative of the young community in Lurgan.”

Councillor Carla Lockhart said the school provided “a safe haven for some of the most vulnerable in our society” and described what was done as horrendous.

“Those who did this don’t have a heart at all,” she continued. “I spoke with the principal who was overwhelmed by the support he has received from right across the community. Youth groups wanted to help out in any way they could. I trust the people who did this will be brought to justice.”

Councillor Meta Crozier said it was “just unbelievable” what happened.

“I have no doubt the community will get behind the school and it will go from strength to strength,” she added.

Councillor Johnny McGibbon said Ceara was an important facility and he hoped that families and students could now prepare for the new school year in peace.

Three teenagers rampaged through newly painted fencing at the school, ripping up trees planted in the memory of pupils who have passed away and tore up the foundations of a much needed extension.

The vandals drove a dumper truck which had been used by workmen building the new £500,000 extension.