SYDNI Centre in Leamington hit by vandals again - The Leamington Observer

SYDNI Centre in Leamington hit by vandals again

Leamington Editorial 21st Dec, 2023   0

THE SYDNI Centre in Leamington has been hit by vandals again.

Nine newly planted saplings were pulled up and their protective supports broken at the centre’s community orchard.

The damage has been reported to the police and is estimated to amount to £1,000.

Centre manager Helen Jones said: “It is so disappointing. The trees may not survive, and the community will not have the access to free apples as we had hoped. Once again, it is mindless damage by a few.”

This is not the first time the SYDNI Centre, which provides essential services for residents, has been the victim of vandals.

Over the summer it was the target of continued acts of vandalism to its Cottage Square building and grounds, amounting to some £2,500.

Incidents included the dismantling of two special memorial benches in the garden, stakes supporting trees being pulled up and a broken window. The ‘Welcome to the Garden’ sign was damaged, which was particularly upsetting to the volunteer garden group.

And the contents of a skip, filled during a clear out, was emptied and strewn around the children’s playground.

A group of youths were believed to be behind the vandalism after being caught on CCTV climbing onto the centre’s roof.

The repair bills have had to come out of grants and donations, which the centre, on the Sydenham estate, can ill afford.

The Syndi Centre has been serving a community of over 10,000 residents for over 20 years. It aims to offer a safe and welcoming place for all residents and provides support, drop-in sessions, group work and hosts events.

The services included range from mental health support, sports activities, arts and craft groups and bingo, to education such as ESOL classes and English and maths classes for children.

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