Charity’s memorial tree dug up by thief

Where the tree once stood:  David Smith, service manager Peter Wardhaugh and David Oakes
Where the tree once stood: David Smith, service manager Peter Wardhaugh and David Oakes
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A CHARITY hit by a string of thefts has been dealt another blow by yobs who dug up their memorial tree.

Workers at Scope, in Clare Road, Halifax, were shocked to discover the willow uprooted and stolen from their garden.

It was planted in March last year to mark the building opening and in memory of one of their users.

Peter Wardhaugh, service manager, said he was worried the same thing will keep happening. “My concern is that if we replace the tree someone will come and take it again,” he said.

“We also want to create a sensory garden but again, my concern is that people are just going to come and destroy it.”

The tree theft comes after the charity was broken into three times in six weeks at the end of last year.

Each time, the team – who provide educational, therapeutic and recreational activities for people with physical difficulties and other disabilities – had their offices ransacked.

Just before Christmas, they came into work to discover gifts for the people they help gone.

Mr Wardhaugh believed the people who broke in must have been desperate and were looking for cash or property they could sell.

But he can only think whoever dug up the tree took it for themselves.

Anyone with information about the theft should call Calderdale Police via 0845 6060606 or CrimeStoppers, where information can be passed anonymously, on 0800 555111.