Children at special school distressed after thieves steal artificial grass from play area

Staff and students at Limington House School discovered a section of artificial grass had been cut out and removed by thieves. Credit: Limington House School

Children at a special school in Basingstoke have been left distressed after thieves stole artificial grass from the school's play area.

Staff and students at Limington House School returned after the half term to discover that a section of the field had been cut out and removed.

Limington House is a special school for children aged 4-19 with severe or profound and multiple learning difficulties.

It says the space is very important for children at the school with disabilities, who need the space to expand their sensory needs.

An area of 7m x 9m in the middle of the field was stolen, leaving children shocked and unable to use the play area.

Headmaster, Justin Innes said: "I'm angry and saddened that a member of the public would actually come onto our site and cut and steal a really large segment of our outdoor play area, which for our children is a really important part of their learning.


  • Headteacher, Justin Innes said the repair costs are more than £2,800

"A lot of our children don't understand why they can't use the area, but those that do don't understand why someone would come on site and steal our artificial grass. It makes no sense to them or to any of our members of our school community."

He added: "We believe that the artificial grass was stolen overnight on Friday 3rd June."

"The repair costs are more than £2,800 and the loss is not covered by insurance as the loss/damage is not within a building."

"NoMow grass company have been very supportive and were very saddened to hear about the artificial grass being cut and stolen.

"They are repairing the primary outside play area and the school is very grateful for their support."

The chair of governors, Roy Cleaver, said: "The play area is very important for our children, who, because of their disability, need this space to expand their sensory needs.

"The loss of it is devastating for their mental and physical wellbeing.

"Place and routine are very important for them and any change can immediately set back their development."

Friends of Limington House (FOLH) is a charity that organises fundraising activities to help provide specialist equipment for the school, and arranges events.

Limington House is a special school for children aged 4-19 with severe or profound and multiple learning difficulties. Credit: ITV News Meridian

Representative of FOHL, Jane Oliver, said: "The Friends of Limington House would like to support the school and, in particular, the primary aged students who have been affected by this theft.

"We have set up a GoFundMe page to raise funds for replacement and repair to the artificial grass playing field.

"Unfortunately, the cost is not covered by insurance and the school's limited budget is squeezed so tightly that it cannot cover this cost without impacting educational needs."