DEVASTATED dance academy youngsters had their faith restored after generous supporters helped replace a stack of presents.
Staff and students of the Hollis Academy of Dance, in Hartlepool, were left sickened when thieves broke in a week ago and made off with around two dozen presents which the youngsters had bought for each other in a Secret Santa.
The criminals also stole two expensive laptop computers which had all the dance academy’s music on it.
But the true spirit of the season was shown when local businesses and groups donated around £250 from local businesses and to replace them.
Pleased principal Lisa Hollis, of the academy in Moreland Street, said: “The support has been absolutely amazing. The generosity of people has restored our faith in the people of Hartlepool.
“We have basically managed to replace everything. We were prepared to meet the shortfall but we haven’t had to.”
The break-in is believed to have happened overnight on Saturday, December 14.
Police are investigating the crime.
Anyone with information about the break-in is asked to contact Detective Constable Leigh Moon, at Hartlepool Police, on the 101 non-emergency number.
People can also call the charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.