Thieves brought New Year heartbreak to kids with a break-in at their Leeds primary school’s “farm” which led to foxes killing parent sponsored chickens.
Intent on stealing the farm’s all terrain quad bike, the raiders left gaping holes in the Farsley Farfield Primary School farm enclosure and foxes got a number of young chickens who had not got to safety through the solar panel controlled chicken coop door.
Now headteacher, Peter Harris has had the task of identifying the missing sponsored chickens from ankle rings and contacting families to break the sad news
The farm at the 400-plus pupil school in Cote Lane, Farsley, is a horticultural educational project and involves youngsters in growing fresh food and selling it via “Veg Bag” system to locals.
On Tuesday night the thieves, who are believed to have planned their approach, used a grinder to cut a “huge hole” in the chicken enclose and then jemmied open the large garage where the quad bike was stolen. After cutting through the chain tethering the bike, they cut through and released a disused gate which formed part of the perimeter fence on the farm field, explained Mr Harris.
At 11pm on Tuesday a passer-by spotted a chicken in a foxe’s mouth and several other chicken carcasses and alerted the police who contacted the caretaker.
“If it had not been for that person, when the chicken coop door unlocked automatically at 8am on Wednesday the remaining chickens would have been free and foxes would have got the lot,” said Mr Harris.
At weekends and holidays a rota of families check.
“It is very disappointing and emotionally upsetting for the children. We take every precaution to protect the chickens, but you can not legislate for idiots who breaks in to steal a quad bike. Mr Harris said: “Staff have come in to make basic repairs.