Thieves steal £24k out of school budget

Ballyclare Secondary School. INNT 07-065-FP
Ballyclare Secondary School. INNT 07-065-FP

MINDLESS thieves have stolen almost £24,000 worth of lead from Newtownabbey schools over the past nine months, it has been revealed.

Figures released by the North Eastern Education and Library Board show that a total of £45,000 worth of lead was stolen from the roofs of school buildings in the Board’s area between April 2011 and January 2012.

In the East Antrim area alone, thieves struck on 34 occasions, stealing lead worth over £30,000 from primary and secondary schools, several of which were targeted on more than one occasion.

While the Board declined to list the individual schools involved, the Times has learnt that the vast majority of incidents (26 of the 34) took place in the Newtownabbey area, accounting for £24,000 of the total figure.

It has been confirmed that 16 local schools were targeted in total during the past nine months, including those that were worst-hit - Ballyclare Secondary School and Edmund Rice College.

Councillor Lynn Frazer, Newtownabbey Borough Council’s representative on the NEELB, described the figures as “deeply concerning.”

Read the full story in this week’s Times...