Van­dals put char­ity off road

FoodTrain shock

Stirling Observer - - FRONT PAGE - Robert Fairnie

Staff at a char­ity which helps older peo­ple with their shop­ping has been left dev­as­tated af­ter one of its ve­hi­cles was bro­ken into.

Vol­un­teers from Stir­ling Food Train have for al­most six years been tak­ing gro­ceries and es­sen­tials to over-65s who strug­gle to do their own shop­ping.

But on Satur­day even­ing they were hit with a blow when one of their de­liv­ery vans had its win­dows smashed while parked at Stir­ling En­ter­prise Park in Play­ers Road.

Re­gional man­ager Fran Thow said ded­i­cated helpers spent Mon­day drop­ping off sup­plies us­ing their own cars but the char­ity has had to hire a new van to com­plete de­liv­er­ies through­out the week.

And, along with the ex­cess they will be re­quired to pay on their in­sur­ance, the whole or­deal will likely cost them around £250 – the same amount raised at a re­cent char­ity bag pack­ing event.

Fran told the Ob­server: “We are ab­so­lutely dev­as­tated by this.

“It’s dread­ful and it re­ally is go­ing to cost us.

“The in­side of the cab is cov­ered in frag­ments of glass and blood so it needs to be taken away for spe­cial­ist clean­ing.

“Our vol­un­teers have been bril­liant and they have been us­ing their own ve­hi­cles while we try and get a hire van.

“We’re likely go­ing to have to pay for a week’s hire, which might even run into a sec­ond week.

“The van will be taken away and it will be dealt with by in­sur­ance but we will still have to pay the ex­cess.

“We’ve just done a Tesco bag pack, rais­ing £256, and it looks like that’s go­ing to be spent on this.”

In their first five years the char­ity trans­ported sup­plies to more than 430 cus­tomers through­out the lo­cal au­thor­ity area, mak­ing more than 19,000 de­liv­er­ies.

A survey car­ried out by the Stir­ling Food Train found that 32 per cent of cus­tomers said they would be un­able to ac­cess food with­out the ser­vice.

The in­ci­dent is be­lieved to have hap­pened some time be­tween 10.30pm and 11.30pm on Satur­day.

The folow­ing day po­lice ex­am­ined CCTV footage and made an ar­rest.

A 23-year-old man was sched­uled to ap­pear at Stir­ling Sher­iff Court on Mon­day morn­ing on six charges.

Th­ese in­clude at­tempted break-ins to ve­hi­cles, a theft and a theft by house­break­ing.

For more in­for­ma­tion on the char­ity phone 01786 450536 or go to the­food­

We are ab­so­lutely dev­as­tated by this

Dis­traught Food Train’s Fran Thow

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