There was a little less bounce to start the week for students at a Whangārei primary school after thieves stole their trampoline.

The jumping mat and springs that attached it to the frame were gone when students at Maunu Primary started to line up to use it before school yesterday.

Instead they were left peering into an empty hole where the sunken tramp has been for at least 20 years providing students with playground memories.

The cruel blow was first discovered by the school's caretaker when he arrived about 7.30am.

And the impact of the theft was clear on the student's faces and their message to those responsible was equally as succinct.

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Maunu Primary School students Oliver Teale, Emma Bradley and Taj Roberts want their trampoline mat and springs back. Photo/ John Stone
Maunu Primary School students Oliver Teale, Emma Bradley and Taj Roberts want their trampoline mat and springs back. Photo/ John Stone

"Just don't steal from little kids and a school. It's just wrong," 11-year-old Oliver Teale said.

"Kids were lining up this morning and when they found out they were so annoyed."

For 10-year-old Taj Roberts the trampoline has provided some historic moments.

"I did my first back flip on this trampoline. I just don't know why someone would steal it."

And 11-year-old Emma Bradley appealed to the mean thieves to return the mat and springs so the students could continue to increase their skill levels.

"Part of our community is gone ... it's like burning down a building in the city, it's gone. Please if you have it give it back."

Deputy principal Claire Turton said the trampoline was custom built so the tramp mat and springs would be unlikely to fit a standard trampoline. Photo/ John Stone
Deputy principal Claire Turton said the trampoline was custom built so the tramp mat and springs would be unlikely to fit a standard trampoline. Photo/ John Stone

Deputy principal Claire Turton said the trampoline was custom-built so the tramp mat and springs would be unlikely to fit a standard trampoline.

"It's been here for years and is utilised by all 340 students. Plus the school grounds and facilities are utilised by our wonderful community."

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The trampoline was one of many activities on the school grounds which also included tennis courts with basketball hoops, a scooter track and climbing obstacles.

New blue matting covering the springs around the outside had just been installed but that had been left behind.

The theft happened over the weekend but Turton was hoping with the help of the wider community they would be able to narrow down a time.

"It would have taken some planning and some time so I doubt it would have been done during daylight hours," she said.

The hole had been fenced off using bailing twine and electric fence standards and would stay that way until the stolen items were found or returned or the school stumped up for a replacement.

The theft has also been reported to police. If you think you can help contact Maunu Primary School or police on Crimestoppers 0800 555 111.

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