Hal­lowe’en van­dals hit his­toric shel­ter

Southport Visiter - - Front Page - JAMIE LOPEZ jamie.lopez@trin­i­tymir­ror.com @jamie_lopez1

VAN­DALS have again struck in South­port’s Kings Gar­dens, smash­ing glass in one of the Vic­to­rian shel­ters.

Most of the win­dows were bro­ken on the shel­ter next to Marine Lake, leav­ing Sefton Coun­cil fac­ing a bill of thou­sands of pounds for re­pairs.

Coun­cil of­fi­cers vis­ited the site on Wed­nes­day morn­ing and were faced with a large clean-up op­er­a­tion be­cause of the dam­age.

The van­dal­ism took place on Hal­lowe’en, a day af­ter sim­i­lar dam­age had been caused at the side of the Atkin­son Theatre on Lord Street, when two glass pan­els were smashed at the front of the build­ing.

Kings Gar­dens has re­peat­edly been hit in re­cent years, with sig­nif­i­cant dam­age caused on a num­ber of oc­ca­sions.

Last Novem­ber, van­dals smashed another of the shel­ters and sprayed it with graf­fiti.

Weeks ear­lier, se­cu­rity guards from nearby Plea­sure­land had stopped a group from start­ing a fire in the gar­dens.

In Septem­ber 2016, a sec­tion of con­crete wall and or­na­men­tal rail­ings along the Marine Lake perime­ter were bro­ken and knocked over, again caus­ing sig­nif­i­cant dam­age.

Plea­sure­land and Lake­side Minia­ture Rail­way (LMR) have also been re­peated tar­gets for van­dals, who have started fires and dam­aged prop­erty at the theme park.

In May this year, an LMR train packed with fam­i­lies en­joy­ing the ride was de­railed af­ter a plank of wood and large stone were placed on the track - just weeks af­ter the at­trac­tion was re­opened fol­low­ing a large in­vest­ment.

Mersey­side po­lice have pre­vi­ously in­creased pa­trols in the area to re­sponse to these in­ci­dents, only for a sim­i­lar at­tack to now strike again at the gar­dens.

One res­i­dent said of the lat­est in­ci­dent: “I don’t know what they get out of it - it’s ab­so­lutely mind­less. They need some real pun­ish­ment.”

A po­lice spokesman said “Mersey­side Po­lice is ap­peal­ing for in­for­ma­tion af­ter a Vic­to­rian shel­ter in Kings Gar­dens, South­port was dam­aged by van­dals on Tues­day.

“A re­port was re­ceived at around 10am to­day (Wed­nes­day, Novem­ber 17) that 12 of 16 win­dows in the shel­ter had been bro­ken.

“It is be­lieved the win­dows were dam­aged some time be­tween 5pm on Tues­day and 7am on Wed­nes­day.

“Any­one with in­for­ma­tion is asked to con­tact 101 quot­ing crime ref­er­ence num­ber 0517278776 or Crimestop­pers, anony­mously, on 0800 555 111.”

Vd Van­dals l struck t k again i at t Kings Gar­dens on Hal­lowe’en

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