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Staplehurst: Trailer stolen from Chalkdown Group Riding for the Disabled Association

By Natalie Tipping

A charity which helps disabled people has been left shocked after a piece of equipment was stolen in the early hours.

Chalkdown Group Riding for the Disabled Association helps children and adults with disabilities, and is run on an entirely voluntary basis. 

Volunteers from the Staplehurst charity were shocked to discover this morning that thieves had stolen a horse trailer from a volunteer's yard on Maidstone Road. 

Volunteers with the trailer shortly after it was purchased

Volunteers with the trailer shortly after it was purchased

Volunteers had spent over a year fundraising to buy the trailer, which they use to transport ponies to and from the charity's base at Duckhurst Farm Equestrian Centre, as well as to the vets and to events. 

Pauline Roestenburg, chairman of the organisation, said: "We were appalled that people would do this, especially to a charity. They must have known that that was what the trailer was for, as it's written on the side.

"They went to great lengths to push it through paddocks and fields, and a hedge has been bulldozed on Couchman Green Lane. 

This hedge was knocked down in Couchman Green Lane.

This hedge was knocked down in Couchman Green Lane.

"The group is run entirely by volunteers and they had spent over a year fundraising to buy the trailer, which they took delivery of in March.

"It is a very distinctive bright red Ifor Williams trailer, and it has Chalkdown Group RDA written on it with the charity logo."

The yard is covered by CCTV, which the group is now hoping to download. 

A police spokesman said: "Kent Police was called at 8am on Friday 28 July, 2017 when it was reported a horse box had been stolen in Staplehurst. It had been stored at a location off the A229, Maidstone Road."

If anyone has any information about this incident, contact police on 01622 604100 quoting reference YY/21202/17. Alternatively contact Kent Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.

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