Vandals broke into dance studio

Newspaper: Wakefield Express.'Story: Samantha's School of Dance based at Standbridge Community Centre, Wakefield, has been broken into twice over one weekend.'Pictured: Business owner Samantha Williams in her dance studio.'Photo date: 13/01/16'Picture Ref: AB011a0116
Newspaper: Wakefield Express.'Story: Samantha's School of Dance based at Standbridge Community Centre, Wakefield, has been broken into twice over one weekend.'Pictured: Business owner Samantha Williams in her dance studio.'Photo date: 13/01/16'Picture Ref: AB011a0116

Vandals broke into a dance studio twice in three days, causing hundreds of pounds worth of damage.

The yobs targeted Samantha’s School of Dance at Standbridge Lane Community Centre, Kettlethorpe, during the early hours of Friday.

They damaged a door to get into the studio and then ransacked through some drawers.

The vandals returned two days later breaking in through the same door and again searched through the drawers.

Samantha Williams, who runs the dance school, said nothing “substantial” was stolen but she could not understand why anyone would want to target the centre.

She said: “It is really upsetting that these people are trying to jeopardise a positive community activity.

“We have got hundreds of students and children come here aged three and upwards. If the damage had been worse and we had to close, it will be the children who miss out.

“They must have been looking for cash but they have only really damaged the door and caused a mess.”

A number of businesses and activity groups are based in the community centre, including a hairdressers and a boxing club. Mrs Williams is concerned the vandals will target the other businesses.

She said: “There a lot of small businesses at the centre who do a lot of good things for the community. There is a nursery due to open in the next few weeks and if they had got into there then they may not have been able to open.

“All the staff have been really unsettled by what has happened but we all just want to put a stop to it.”

Standbridge Lane Community Centre chairwoman Oshione Ekpeh has spoken with West Yorkshire Police about increasing security at the site.

She said: “They will be doing more patrols around the area and they are advising us on getting CCTV cameras.”

The facility has been open for two years and Mrs Ekpeh said it plays an important part in the community.

She said: “It is at the heart of the community and we will not tolerate what happened, especially after all the hard work to get it up and running.

“It is their centre and those who did this are only stealing from themselves.”

Anyone who witnessed the incidents should call police on 101 or Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.