Wave of support for woman ambushed by brick-throwing youths in Southwater

A wave of public support has gone out to a Southwater businesswoman after she was ambushed by brick-throwing youths in an early morning attack.

Monday, 13th September 2021, 11:39 am
Updated Monday, 13th September 2021, 4:37 pm

Terri Rayner, who runs transport company Middle Earth Minibus, was on her way home from dropping off a passenger at around 2am on Saturday when the attack happened near The Lintot pub.

“As I approached the traffic lights by The Lintot I noticed a traffic cone had been placed blocking the way through,” she said.

“I was going to move the cone, but something didn’t seem right and I only live five minutes away so decided to drive on.

The minibus was attacked by the traffic lights near The Lintot pub in Worthing Road, Southwater

“Then there was a really loud noise, like an explosion.”

When she got home she discovered a side window of the minibus had been completely smashed. “I got back in my car and drove back to where it happened because I thought I might have hit a sign or something,” said Terri. “But when I got there I saw bricks in the road and glass - and then bricks were thrown at my car.

“I pulled over and phoned the police. It was horrific really.

“Whoever did this is a sick twisted individual, to set up a trap and throw bricks at a vehicle, they are clearly looking to hurt people.”

But, said Terri, “the police were exceptional. They were there in minutes.

“They did a thorough search of the area and later phoned me to let me know they were there. They were great.”

Now the community has also rallied behind Terri and the community group Visit Horsham has set up a fundraising appeal to pay for repairs to Terri’s minibus.

Meanwhile, Horsham Police put out a statement on social media. They said: “We are taking action on anti-social behaviour in Southwater, which caused some local people particular concern over the past two nights, (Friday and Saturday, 11 and 12 September).

“A dispersal order giving us power to require suspected trouble makers to leave the area is now in force.

“There will be extra police in the area to enforce that order if necessary and to reassure local people.”

They told villagers: “We are committed to working with you to help deal with these issues.

“Please continue to let us know of any problems, dialling 999 if they are happening there and then, or by using our direct reporting system at https://orlo.uk/frzoz”

The village has been hit by a spate of anti social activity over the past few months. Now some villagers are calling on police to take tougher measures.

One said: “This is far more than just ‘antisocial behaviour’, this is pure evil with intent to cause serious harm, setting up an ambush for vehicles today, what next?”