Oundle CE Primary School launches £10k fundraiser to replace stolen minibus

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‘Hugely upsetting’ theft of school vehicle that was bought via previous fundraising drive

A primary school in our region has been forced to start a GoFundMe campaign following the theft of its only minibus.

Staff at Oundle CE Primary School have been devastated by the theft of their only school vehicle, which was stolen earlier this month.

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"The theft of our school minibus has been a huge setback for us,” said headteacher Joanne Griffin.

Oundle Primary School's minibus was stolen earlier this month in a targeted overnight raid.Oundle Primary School's minibus was stolen earlier this month in a targeted overnight raid.
Oundle Primary School's minibus was stolen earlier this month in a targeted overnight raid.

“It was hugely upsetting to staff and parents that someone should choose to carry out such an act, impacting on young learners.”

The news is made even more bitter by the fact the stolen minibus was purchased via the dedicated efforts of a previous fundraising drive.

“The Friends Association, pupils and their family/friends had fundraised to purchase the minibus in 2022,” Ms Griffin said.

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“It was essential to us for transporting pupils to extra-curricular activities, trips, and sports events.”

The minibus was stolen from a car park protected by electric gates in a targeted overnight raid. Staff have speculated that whoever took the minibus must have climbed over the fence and knew how the gates operated regarding exiting the premises.

A beleaguered Ms Griffin said the minibus “represented freedom and opportunity” and was “more than just a vehicle to the children.”

Its absence, she insisted, has had an immediate and significant impact on the children

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“Many of our planned activities have been cancelled, such as sporting events, thus impacting their educational and social development.”

Oundle Primary said it has no option but to launch another fundraising drive:

“The school has completed an insurance claim,” Ms Griffin explained, “but with the depreciation and no part-exchange, the amount does not cover the cost of another one.”

Thankfully, the local community has rallied round to help support the school in its time of need.

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“The school has been overwhelmed by the generosity of its families and community that have already donated on our ‘GoFundMe page,” said the grateful head.

“[And] Laxton Primary School and Oundle School have helped us by providing a minibus and a driver to take our children to and from their swimming lessons each week as an interim measure.”

Anyone who would like to help Oundle CE Primary reach its £10,000 fundraising goal can make a donation at www.gofundme.com/f/school-minibus-to-enrich-our-learning