Community rallies after church raid during panto show

Community rallies after raffle prizes stolen and vandalised, St John's, Rastrick
Community rallies after raffle prizes stolen and vandalised, St John's, Rastrick

A Rastrick church has praised the community for the generosity after donated raffle prizes were taken and vandalised during a pantomime performance.

The dampers were put on the St John the Divine Church’s performance of Aladdin after thieves entered the church hall in Gooder Lane during the show and stole the majority of raffle prizes.

However, after a posting on social media by one of the parents of the children performing in the panto, the church was inundated with donations.

Graham Readshaw, secretary of the pantomime society said: “One of our parents posted something on Brighouse Banter regarding what had happened and, much to our surprise, people appeared from all over with raffle prizes to top up the few we had left, the result being that we are now able to run a couple more raffles for charity.

“I do not have the names of everyone who donated, but I would like to thank The White Horse, Lightcliffe, Watt Studios, Brighouse, The Barge, Brighouse, The Railway/Commercial, Rastrick, all the friends of St John’s pantomime and anyone who donated but is not mentioned.

“If I have missed anyone in my thanks, I apologise, but it just goes to show the generosity of 99% of the general public and that good will always triumph over evil.”

Police were called on Thursday December 8 to reports of bottles of wine and whiskey being taken with officers continuing to investigate the crime.

Mr Readshaw, who said chocolates were found scattered and smashed bottles on the floor, praised the help of the police officers.

“The police were contacted and, all credit to them, arrived to investigate whilst I was still on the phone with the control room. They also provided a noticeable presence during our show on Friday and the two on Saturday.”

The church also had a collection for BLOODWISE, an organisation extremely close to church.

The charity is trying to find cures for various types of leukaemia, including Chronic Myelomono Cytic Leukaemia (CMML) for which David Williams, one of the church members, is receiving treatment. During these collections £506 was raised, the highest amount collected in the after show collections.