WISBECH: Conman stole almost £1,000 from charity based at Addenbrooke's Hospital

PUBLISHED: 12:30 25 June 2009 | UPDATED: 09:08 02 June 2010

A WISBECH conman stole almost £1,000 from a charity set up to aid the families of seriously ill children. Brian Hurle, 39, admitted the theft from the Sick Children s Trust when he appeared before Cambridge magistrates and will be sentenced next month. Hu

A WISBECH conman stole almost £1,000 from a charity set up to aid the families of seriously ill children.

Brian Hurle, 39, admitted the theft from the Sick Children's Trust when he appeared before Cambridge magistrates and will be sentenced next month.

Hurle banked a cheque from the trust for urgent maintenance but never returned to carry out the work.

"Brian Hurle has caused many hours of work, distress and heartache for all concerned," said Joy Worship, manager of Acorn House, based on the Addenbrooke's Hospital site.

"It will take us along time to recoup this amount of money, and needless to say we still haven't been able to get our floors sanded and polished.

Last night Hurle vowed to pay back every penny and said he was "ashamed and embarrassed".

He told the Wisbech Standard that illness had stopped him working at the Cambridge unit.

He was off work for seven weeks, suffering from a ruptured abscess and a subsequent infection.

"I did offer to do the work then, but they refused to let me," he said. "It had gone on too long, it should never have happened. In court it sounded really bad, I was so ashamed."

"My mother will write out a cheque when I am sentenced on July 13. There is a possibility I will go to prison, I will take it on the chin."

Hurle said £360 of the charity's money was spent on materials, and the rest was used to pay direct debits.

Hurle, of Mount Pleasant Road, admitted stealing £960 from the charity between September 2008 and March 14 this year.

On three occasions the home was cleared so Hurle could carry out the work, but each time he gave an excuse and failed to show.

Acorn House provides "a home from home" for families whose children are receiving hospital treatment for serious illnesses.

Ms Worship said: "We at The Sick Children's Trust rely solely on donations and we support families who have very sick children.

"Acorn House is a place of sanctuary, a reprieve from the hospital environment whilst going through a traumatic if not devastating time in their lives.

It costs roughly £25 per night to support a family and their child; therefore he has taken away 40 nights of a place where the family can be together, sometimes for the last time.

"Every penny is essential for the running of Acorn House and the families we support; this has been a huge loss in many ways," she said.


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