WATCH: Moment “mindless” vandals trash memorial garden for seven-year-old Summer Grant
The moment “mindless” vandals trashed a memorial garden for seven-year-old Summer Grant has been released in a bid to track down the culprits who left her family devastated.
A group of four teenagers, some in school uniform, are seen hurling bricks onto the roof of Valley Primary Academy, before scrawling over floors and walls with chalk and finally turning their attention to the garden.
It had been erected last year to give Summer’s family and classmates to sit and reflect on Summer and her life.
Police are currently investigating but no arrests have been made.
The Hellesdon girl had been playing at a funfair in Harlow, Essex, on March 26 last year, when the bouncy castle she was on blew away in strong winds. She later died from her injuries.
Her family worked alongside staff at Valley Primary Academy, where Summer had served on the school council, to create a garden in her memory.
Cara Blackie, Summer’s mum, urged whoever was responsible to come forward, describing the last year as “a never ending nightmare”.
“I just don’t understand why,” she said. “I know kids do silly things but I don’t know what would go through someone’s mind to do this?
“It is very well known what happened to Summer, and it was very obvious what the garden was for.”
Ms Blackie had discussed with the school what to do in memory of Summer, and opted for a garden “so kids could go there and look at the flowers.”
“I would go in there on occasion too when I go to pick up my other daughter or in the summer holidays,” she added.
After she was told of the vandalism she said she was “just disgusted. It is so disrespectful.
“This upsets people and it shouldn’t happen - people should be accountable for it. The school said it’s not about the money but they put their hand in their own pocket and went out of their way to make the garden look lovely.”
With an Essex police investigation continuing and two people on bail, Ms Blackie said: “It’s like a never ending nightmare”.
“You are forced into something you did not ever expect to happen to your child,” she said. “It’s upsetting. After losing Summer it feels like I have been on another planet since last year.”
While the garden has now been tidied up, assistant head at Valley Primary Stuart Walker condemned the culprits as having “no respect”, and has passed CCTV to the police.
He said the garden had been created “to have a place where we could sit and reflect on Summer and her time here.”
“It is not so much about the cost as the impact on the children. We are deeply saddened by the mindless vandalism.”
Anyone with information about those responsible should contact police on 101 and quote reference NC-17052017-87