Heartless crooks steal from charity fund-raiser in Grantham

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Prizes and equipment worth hundreds of pounds were stolen halfway through a weekend charity fund-raiser - and what was left behind was smashed.

Heartless crooks took hundreds of items from a marquee at Kesteven Rugby Club on Saturday night, put up by The Yorkshire Terrier and Toy Breed Rescue.

This is the second time a charitable event has been targeted of late - an £8,000 generator was stolen during Knipfest in June.

The Osbournby-based rescue centre has held events at the rugby club, in Woodnook, annually for the past six years, without incident. But this year’s hit has lost them several hundreds of pounds.

Sue Harrowell runs the rescue centre. She said: “It was quite upsetting when I got there; I just broke down and cried.

“They knew that it was for a charity fund-raiser because we had banners up everywhere.”

Microphones, cables and speakers were taken, while raffle and tombola prizes stolen include a blender, headphones, a dog hamper, food hamper, pamper items and gardening equipment. Two hundred cans of fizzy pop were also taken.

And what the thieves deemed to be worthless was destroyed, including cups and dog rescue keyrings.

Sue said: “We usually raise about £1,500 but this time it was only £700 because we had to go out and buy stuff.”

Proceeds taken during the weekend were going to be split between the dog rescue centre and armed forces charity Pilgrim Bandits. Special guest during the weekend was Ben Parkinson, a paratrooper who lost both legs in 2006 and went on to carry the Olympic flame and be appointed an MBE.

Sue said: “He was devastated that someone could do that to us. Because we only raised a bit we couldn’t share a great deal with the charity which, again, upset me.”

Despite the setback, Sue refused to let the burglary ruin the day and she refuses to let it put a stop to future annual fund-raisers at the rugby ground.

Information to police: 101.

** Foster homes for dogs are being sought. To find out more, call Sue on 07852 965163.