Couple's anger after house party damage

A COUPLE left with a £6,000 repair bill after their teenage daughter held a house party while they were on holiday last night branded the youths responsible for the damage as "animals".

A COUPLE left with a £6,000 repair bill after their teenage daughter held a house party while they were on holiday last night branded the youths responsible for the damage as "animals".

More than 70 pupils from Stowupland High School turned up at the party in Wyverstone after Sarah Symons, 16, had announced her plans during an assembly.

Sarah's mother Sharon and stepfather David had gone to France and had left her with relatives to prepare for her GCSEs.

But she got hold of a spare set of keys, paving the way for the party at the Church Hill address.

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As well as 70 pupils turning up, 30 older people joined the festivities when the village hall disco ended at midnight.

But the party got out of her control and a catalogue of damage was left behind including two six foot conifers snapped in half, a banister torn from the wall and curtain rails ripped down.

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In an alcohol-fuelled rampage the youngsters destroyed three beds and stubbed out cigarettes on carpets and windowsills throughout the house.

The patio doors were all but torn off their hinges and a neighbour's fence was broken by revellers who climbed over it to use a trampoline.

Some even climbed on the roof, breaking 40 tiles.

Last night, Mr Symons said Sarah had been both remorseful and devastated about what happened.

But he hit out at those who had caused the damage, and issued a warning to parents that their 15 or 16-year-olds were still children and could not be trusted.

Mr Symons, a BT engineer, said: "The people who trashed our house were like animals. It's a yob culture we live in. There seems to be no control over them.

"We were only three days into our holiday in the south of France and had to come back. We have now made Sarah go round to the neighbours to apologise.

"We hope she has learnt her lesson. We have never had any trouble with her before, any drink or smoking problems, she has no record of problems with the school, and has not even had an individual detention.

"Only the week before this happened she was taking part in a charity fashion show, on the catwalk raising money for charity. We just do not want someone else to have to go through what we have.''

Mrs Symons, a dinner lady at nearby Bacton Middle School, said: "We want parents to be aware what teenagers can get up to, we want to get the message across. When they are 15 or 16 years old you trust them, but they are children and you must not forget that.

"She is full of remorse, a very sad girl. She just could not control them and was so frightened. They just went wild.

"Sarah has been painting over the walls, been out in the field picking bottles up in case the farmer damages his combine harvester. Sarah has tried to make amends, done as much as she can clearing up.

"She has done nothing like this before and we thought we could trust her. She's broken my heart and I feel betrayed. The house still felt dirty to me, even though I've been on my hands and knees scrubbing floors.''

And the couple said if the insurance does not cover the extent of the damage, she will have to lose her moped to pay for it.

Karen Grimes, headteacher at Stowupland High School, said: "This incident happened over a weekend, at a private address. We understand there were a number of young people there, some of whom may have been our older students who are now on study leave before their GCSE exams.

"Unfortunately this means we are unlikely to see them now as a year group to be able to discuss the issues that are concerning Mr and Mrs Symons.

"The school has talked to Mr and Mrs Symons about this incident and their concerns, and will be contacting them again to explain how this can be discussed in more detail. We will also co-operate fully with any police investigation into this matter, as we would with any such incident.''

Suffolk Constabulary said officers went to the Symons' home after receiving a call at 12.30am on May 21. A spokesman said: "No offences had been committed at that point and no further calls were received that night.''

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