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Arsonists target pupils’ lockdown artwork on school gates

Arsonists have set fire to artwork created by vulnerable pupils and children of key workers which was hung on the gates at a West Leeds primary school.

Staff at Five Lanes Primary in Wortley were left shocked after rainbow artwork based on the school’s logo was deliberately set alight at the school gate at around 6pm last night (Monday). The rainbows were made from a plastic frame and brightly coloured strips of material as part of an art activity.

Five Lanes headteacher Joanna Mercer said:

“We have not made the children aware as we don’t want them to worry but staff are really shocked that anyone would do something like this.”

Ms Mercer said the school had CCTV footage but that they were unable to identify the culprits. She added:

“After a wonderful day welcoming the return of all our pupils, last night we were subject to an arson attack.

“Our school logo is a rainbow and during the first lockdown the vulnerable children and children of Keyworkers made some beautiful rainbows which we hung at our school gates. The rainbows were admired by so many and were a bright and welcoming sight for anyone that visited our school

“The youths set one of them alight, which caused a fire on the school gates.

“Fortunately, a resident and friend of the school noticed the fire as he returned home from work and quickly put this out. We contacted the school PFI company, who sent out a member of staff to ensure the site was secure. 

“Despite having CCTV footage, we are currently unable to identify the culprits but would like to share what happened to raise awareness in the local community. This incident could have resulted in someone being seriously hurt and significant damage to our school grounds.

“As a community we are extremely proud of our school, we teach and encourage our children to take pride in their surroundings and are deeply saddened that anyone would want to cause such damage.”

West Yorkshire Police are appealing for information to the incident. Anyone with information is asked to call police on 101.


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