Volunteers who vowed to hunt down and prosecute park vandals have been rocked by a fresh spate of destruction – seemingly in revenge.
Donington’s Flinders Park has long been a target of vandals, prompting locals to make prosecution threats in our sister paper the Spalding Guardian.
But since the story appeared last month, attempts have been made to break the park pergola, climbing wires for plants have been ripped off and flowers crushed under foot.
Vandals had also defaced an information board containing a sign saying volunteers would take legal action against any culprits caught.
“It would appear that the vandals have taken our pledge to prosecute as a challenge,” said South Holland District Councillor Jane King, who is also a member of the volunteer group IDEA (Improving the Donington Environment for All).
“They obviously did that to make the point that they don’t care what we do. Do they realise that if prosecuted they will have a criminal record which will show on college and job applications?
“Why do they feel they can do this damage? How would they feel if their bike, skateboard or any article of theirs was vandalised?
In the past the park has sufered from similar damage, including shrubs being pulled up, a bridge damaged and beer bottles and bricks smashed and thrown into flower beds.
It has been reported that so much alcohol is being taken into the park that some is even being left behind.
There is CCTV in the park and volunteers have been checking it more regularly since incidents got worse.
Coun King added: “How do parents feel about these articles in the newspapers? Shall we not bother, shall we stop planting weeding, repairing, cutting the grass, trying as hard as we possibly can to make the park pleasant for everybody to use and enjoy?
“All the work is done by volunters and fundraising.
“We get no help from the local authority, as we wanted the park personal to Donington.
“Would people prefer that it went back to the unkept area it was in the past?”
The IDEA Group has asked for the opinions of residents on the vandalism and what can be done and what their ideas are for the future of the park.
You can call Coun King on 01775 820536 or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org