Saturday, 13 August 2022

Hospice charity hit by vandalism

VANDALS have caused damage to property in the grounds of the Sue Ryder hospice in Nettlebed.

The gardens at Joyce Grove are private but the charity allows members of the public to walk through them.

However, it says it may reconsider this if the problem with vandalism persists.

The charity says window panes in a summer house have been smashed, broken bottles and litter have been left around the grounds and and donation bags ripped open and the contents strewn about.

Hospice director Stewart Marks said that clearing up the mess cost both time and money.

In a letter to this week’s Henley Standard, he said: “The grounds of the hospice are lovingly maintained by our groundsman and volunteers to create a peaceful, calm place for patients, their families and friends to enjoy whilst in our care.

“Although we allow access for the public to walk through the grounds, they are private and, as such, we expect people to respect this.

“We do not wish to close the grounds but may have to consider this if the damage and disrespectful use of them continues. 

“We are grateful for the support Thames Valley Police are giving us in helping to solve these issues, but would ask the local community to please only access the grounds if they can do so respectfully.”

Last month Sandy Hale, of Deanacre, Henley, wrote to the Henley Standard about people stealing from the charity’s sales.

She helps out at the sales and said children’s clothes were being stolen even though most items are not worth more than £5.

Mrs Hale said: “Unfortunately, of late we have seen an increase in new faces who are stealing from our stall, despite our precautions to avoid this happening.

“How sad that people can take from those who are in much greater need as every penny we take is used to support the hospice.”

In January, the charity complained about a problem with people dumping waste at the charity’s donation station.

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