Milk snatchers who were stealing cartons from outside a school on a daily basis until it was placed under lock and key have returned.
Police were called in after the thieves climbed the padlocked gates at St Helen’s Primary School on Hemsworth’s Highfield Road between 3am and 6.30am last Thursday morning.
They then smashed off the lock to a cage where the milk was stored, ready for the children’s arrival that day.
The school had bought the cage earlier this year after thieves had entered the premises almost every morning to steal the batch of small cartons which the school provides free of charge to the under fives.
Caretaker Barbara Wain said: “It’s the first time it’s happened in months but it was happening every day, that’s why we got the cage.
“To carry all that milk, they must have brought a vehicle, you couldn’t just walk down the street with it. They have also brought something with them to break the padlock.
“We have not got a clue who is doing it or why, they are only small cartons for the children.
“It’s not a lot of money but this milk is for the kids, and we have to make sure that they do not go without.”
School business manager, Julie Pratt added: “It’s a government driven initiative that up to the age of five each child is entitled to a third of a pint of milk, so we have to buy it.
“It’s just ridiculous that someone is stealing it, it’s the children that are missing out because of it.”
It was reported that milk has been stolen from outside several other primary and junior schools in the area in recent months.
Anyone who has details is being asked to contact police on the non-emergency number, 101.