Vandalism to fencing around town skatepark prompts security patrols

Security patrols have had to be arranged to protect the soon to be completed skate park refurbishment in Sleaford. EMN-170304-120019001
Security patrols have had to be arranged to protect the soon to be completed skate park refurbishment in Sleaford. EMN-170304-120019001

Sleaford’s £121,000 refurbished skate park is due to be opened to the public for use by the middle of this week once safety checks have been carried out, but security patrols have had to be arranged to protect it until then due to reports of vandalism.

A statement from Sleaford Town Council on its Facebook page said damage had been done to security fencing surrounding the site on Boston Road Recreation Ground in the last few days. They said: “The council is aware that the skate park is being accessed through the security fencing when it is not completed.

“Security patrols have now been arranged, the police advised and the new CCTV cameras covering the site are fully operational.”

They said: “It would be appreciated if people would stay off the site until it is completed.”

The council said they were aware a lot of people are keen to start using the facility, but while a construction site it could be damaged or someone hurt. Also, a full safety inspection has to take place before they can allow users on it.

Mayor of Sleaford Coun David Suiter said he was made aware of the damage to the fencing on Sunday and said: “The skate park is not finished yet and hasn’t had its health and safety checks yet.

“There is a danger there (for users) and of more concern is the criminal damage to the fencing.”

He said there had been some slight issues which had to be addressed, but once RoSPA has done its checks it will be fit to use.

He said: “That check is very important as a quality check and to make sure everybody is safe.”

Coun Suiter appealed to everyone just to keep off the facility for a few more days for their own safety.

Local BMXer Mikey Warren responded to the warnings on the Town Council’s Facebook page saying: “We’ve been down there today sweeping up and making the park tidy after some stupid 15/16 year olds had been smashing glass bottles everywhere, so the people who genuinely want to use the park for what it is are actually looking after the place. Things need to be done to the children that are disrespecting such an amazing facility.”

Coun Suiter said it was “very foolish” and “irresponsible” if people were leaving broken bottles on the skate park where people could be hurt badly when they fall on glass.

Coun Jan Brealeycook added that she and other staff and councillors had spent hours at the rec’ over the weekend due to the ongoing vandalism.

Last night the seat and pole from the zip slide was stolen and youths set fire to rubbish in the wooded area yesterday, requiring attendance by the fire service. Police have also been called out at least twice.