Vandals damage “vital” animal rescue van in Norwich

An RSPCA van was damaged in Norwich on Monday, October 12. Picture: RSPCA

An RSPCA van was damaged in Norwich on Monday, October 12. Picture: RSPCA - Credit: Archant

An animal charity has been left frustrated and upset after vandals targeted one of its vital rescue vans.

Norfolk Police have launched an investigation after an RSPCA van was damaged while parked off Swanton Road, near Mile Cross Recycling Centre, on Monday.

The damage was caused between 2.45pm and 3pm.

A police spokesman said a number of vehicles were entering and leaving the recycling site at the time.

A spokesperson for the RSPCA said: “It is upsetting to think that someone has deliberately targeted the RSPCA and damaged one of our vans which are vital for our officers to carry out animal rescue work.

“We have a small band of frontline officers in Norfolk and acts of vandalism can affect how effectively we are able to get to and help animals in need.

“It’s frustrating that while the majority of the public are very supportive of our work there are still a small minority of people who feel the need to carry out acts like this.

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“Sadly, this highlights the challenging, difficult conditions and circumstances our officers face in keeping animals safe.

“We hope anyone with any information regarding this incident will contact the police who are investigating this.”

At the end of September the RSCPA revealed it had been called out to 88 horse incidents in Norfolk during the coronavirus crisis.

There were a further 65 horse abandonment or neglect cases in Suffolk.

A further 800 dog-related incidents have been reported in the county this year also after a drastic rise in the search to adopt dogs during lockdown.

Last year, the RSPCA found new homes for 282 dogs in Norfolk.

The impact of the pandemic has also seen the charity announce 270 redundancies and the closure some of its animal shelters.

Norfolk Police is asking any motorists around the recycling centre at the time that may have seen any suspicious activity or dash cam footage to get in touch.

Anyone with information should contact PC Cherie Smith in the Op Solve Team on 101 quoting reference number 36/72150/20.

Alternatively contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.