Hooligans upturn sheds and smash playhouse windows in overnight vandalism at Northampton nursery

The staff of Blackthorn Good Neighbours Nursery came in to find their play area had been vandalised.
The staff of Blackthorn Good Neighbours Nursery came in to find their play area had been vandalised.

A Northampton children's centre play garden has been ransacked by vandals a week before they open for the new term.

Staff were "shocked" to return from the bank holiday yesterday (August 29) to find broken locks and upturned sheds at The Blackthorn Good Neighbours Nursery and Family Centre, in Longmead Court, Blackthorn.

The vandals broke signs and kicked in a new playhouse.

The vandals broke signs and kicked in a new playhouse.

The unknown raiders kicked in the windows of a brand new playhouse, broke signs and stole 40 pairs of children's gardening gloves.

The damage comes as the nursery, which was rated "outstanding" in every area in their first Ofsted inspection in February, was set to reopen for the new term next Monday (September 4).

Manager Hayley Walker said: "We all feel gutted. We have 40 children coming back next week. We've been preparing all summer and now we've come back to this.

"There's nothing of expense out here but it's just a nuisance. I can't think why they've done it. It's been ruined overnight. The biggest worry is they might come back."

A storage shed was broken into and overturned.

A storage shed was broken into and overturned.

Northamptonshire Police say the vandalism took place between 4pm on August 27 and 8.45am on August 29.

Hayley said: "We've just got to try and put it back together before the children come back. I almost don't want them back until it's perfect for them.

"We've had some great support from people on Facebook. People care about this place.

"I feel gutted for the children, and the staff too, who work really hard for the nursery."

A spokeswoman for Northamptonshire Police said: "Witnesses or anyone with information related to this incident are asked to call Northamptonshire Police on 101 or contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111."