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Vandals strike new playground

Queen Elizabeth Park has been vandalised again. PHOTO/CHELSEA BOYLE


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“Senseless” vandalism has once again left its mark on Queen Elizabeth Park, with graffiti sprawled across the front of the cricket pavilion and strewn across some of the equipment in the ‘Kids Own’ playground.

Masterton District Council Infrastructural Services committee chairman Gary Caffell was quick to say he “hates any type of graffiti” but targeting a children’s playground was simply “not on”.

“These are places the kids of Masterton love,” he said.

“These are places that we want to be open and free to everyone with none of that stuff around.

“It will get to the stage where parents won’t want to go there and that’s just not on.”

Among the play equipment was the recently installed ‘Mouse House’.

The revolving wheel was part of a $70,000 upgrade for the popular park.

Mr Caffell said he believed some of the graffiti had occurred on Friday overnight.

The swear words that had been graffitied onto the children’s play equipment were totally inappropriate, he said.

The vandalism has taken place just over a month since the cricket pitch was damaged by doughnuts, which was incredibly “frustrating”.

“The cricket pavilion’s been absolutely done,” he said.

The Masterton District Council had spent well over $50,000 in the past year doing up the cricket area.

Mr Caffell said the whole thing had made him “so angry” he wanted to see the culprits named and shamed.

“It’s probably only a few people, but I can’t understand the thrills they get out of that stuff,” he said.

“There will be people who know, and there will be kids who know their mates are doing this.

“I just hope they can come forward and let us know.”

The issue with vandalism would be discussed with staff and it would be taken down as soon as possible, he said.

“We do our very best to get rid of the graffiti as quickly as we can.”

Mr Caffell said he often heard from members of the community that the police should be doing more, but it was very hard to catch under the cover of night and when damage could be done so quickly.

“It’s hard to nail it.”

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