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BMXs were used by children who couldn't afford their own wheels...

A Staffordshire  primary school has appealed for help to catch the thieves who stole nine BMX bikes.

Boney Hay Primary School, in Burntwood, lost the red bikes in a raid at the end of last week.

The bikes were used to ensure that every child could learn how to ride, regardless of whether they could afford their own one.

The school says it cannot afford to replace them - and it has been the victim of multiple attacks in recent days.

Jen Matthewman, headteacher at the school, told the Express and Star: “On Saturday October 22 we had somebody who managed to get in as far as our kitchen but our alarm went off.

“Then at some point at the end of last week, either Thursday or Friday, our bike shed was broken into and nine bikes were stolen.

"These bikes are bought so every child can access our cycling programme whether they can afford their own bike or not, which most of our students can’t.

"We cannot afford to replace them. One bike was recovered in Lichfield but it was not in a fit state to use.

“We do not know where the other bikes are. What we do is teach the children how to ride bikes and run so they can keep fit in future years.

"We do not expect children to bring in their own bikes because of the cost so as it stands the children cannot take part in the programme.

“Our plan now is to try and save up for a new container for the bikes and then slowly over the time start replacing them.

If anybody has any information about the bikes or can help in anyway to replace them and to get a new container, please contact me on 01543 510455.”

A Staffordshire Police spokeswoman said: “We received a call just after 3pm on Friday October 28 reporting a break-in at a Burntwood primary school.

"Offenders entered the grounds of Boney Hay Primary School overnight between Thursday 27 and Friday October 28 and forced open the double doors to a plastic storage shed.

"A number of red BMX bikes were stolen from inside.” Anyone with any information is asked to call police on 101, quoting incident number 488 of 28 October.”

If you’d like to know more about keeping your bike safe from thieves, read our guide here.

After an unpromising start, having to be bribed by her parents to learn to ride without stabilisers, Sarah became rather keener on cycling in her university years, and was eventually persuaded to upgrade to proper road cycling by the prospect of a shiny red Italian bike, which she promptly destroyed by trapping a pair of knickers in the rear derailleur. Sarah writes about about cycling every weekend on road.cc.