HEARTLESS thieves have stolen a Scout group’s brand new trailer and camping gear.
The criminals stole the Ifor Williams trailer, which was loaded with tents, marquees and cooking equipment, from the driveway of a house on Huddersfield Road, Shelley.
It was taken during the day on Tuesday, between 8am and 4pm.
The thieves are thought to have attached the trailer, worth £5,000, to their vehicle before driving off.
The equipment and twin-axle trailer, worth about £10,000, was bought by Shelley Scout Group following a £5,000 Lottery grant.
Now the group, which has 40 children aged eight to 14, has had to put camping plans on hold and is appealing to other Scout groups to borrow equipment.
Shelley Scout Group, which meets at Shelley Village Hall and Shelley Methodist Church, holds several camps a year.
Group chairman Paul Cartwright, who was storing the trailer in his driveway, said: “All the group’s gear was in the trailer.
“I was shocked and I was gutted when I found it had been stolen.
“All the work and effort into raising the money for the equipment so lads and lasses can go off camping has been destroyed.
“That’s unless the police can find anything, but I don’t know how successful that will be.
“It’s a major disappointment to the whole group.
“We’re going to put all the plans for camping on hold.”
The trailer was only a few weeks old and was attached to an anti-theft device, which was broken by the thieves.
Several of the tents had never been used before.
Mr Cartwright added: “I can’t say what I think of the people who stole it. It should be insured. Whether the insurance will cover everything I don’t know yet.
“Thankfully we have contacts in the group who will be able to help us. The other Scout groups will all pull together and help us out.
“But now it means a lot more effort and a lot more fundraising.”