Volunteers at Peterborough's Railworld call for more help from police after more break-ins at popular city attraction

Wildlife haven has been broken into three times in the past five weeks

By Stephen Briggs
Friday, 24th June 2022, 4:00 pm

Volunteers at Peterborough’s Railworld Wildlife Haven have said they feel let down by police after being broken into three times in the past five weeks.

The attraction, located by the River Nene in Woodston, has regularly been targeted by criminals over the past 30 years, with more than 200 break ins during the three decades – but the volunteers working there have now called for more help from police to catch the culprits – and stop them being targeted again.

"We strongly feel that the police are letting us (very badly) down”

Railworld volunteers with staff from Cross Key Homes who are looking after the site.

In a letter to Cambridgeshire Police chief constable Nick Dean, Rebekah White and Diane Crane, on behalf of all the volunteers, said: “As Volunteers we try to make quite a large area, which Railworld owns, a pleasant and enjoyable place for the public, not only for Peterborough but further afield to visit.

"But we are asking ourselves why we strongly feel that the police are letting us (very badly) down.

“The very few, and we mean very few, officers who have visited us do not inspire us with much confidence that the perpetrator’s will be investigated let alone caught!

“We are being left to feel as if we are a nuisance even reporting these numerous break-ins we are having.

“We felt we had to convey our feelings to you, as head of the police in Cambridgeshire, as we do not seem to be getting anywhere with the local police.

“We would welcome your response and advice, and would like to extend an invite for you to visit us and see for yourself what issues we face with these continual break-ins.”

"Every time we are broken in to, it makes us feel devastated”

Speaking to the Peterborough Telegraph, Rebekah said; “I’ve been volunteering here for four years, and every time we are broken in to, it makes us feel devastated. It makes you think ‘what is the point in what we are doing?

"We never see the police here. They come to move people on from the car park, but they never come to see us, and ask how we are or give us advice. We feel completely let down.”

After one break in during May, a fundraising campaign was set up, which raised more than £3,000. Staff from Cross Keys Homes are also helping out at the site.

Rebekah said: “The support from the community we have had has been unreal. It is so heart warming.”

"We take all reports of crime seriously”

Detective Sergeant Scott Lloyd, from Cambridgeshire Constabulary’s Volume Crime Team, said: “We’re sorry that Railworld has been the victim of repeated crimes. It is a great attraction staffed by dedicated volunteers and hugely important to the people of Peterborough and beyond.

“We take all reports of crime seriously and review all investigative opportunities to try and establish possible suspects. In the case of Railworld this has included reviewing CCTV and visits from our Scenes of Crime Officers.

“Railworld has been highlighted to our response officers for regular night time patrols.

“We will also ensure an officer attends to discuss security and target hardening at the location.”

Anyone with information about the break ins should call police on 101.

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