Vandals put charity off road
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 thefoodtrain.co.uk.
We are absolutely devastated by this
Distraught Food Train’s Fran Thow