Article by Hsin-Yi Lo: Stronger security measures are being introduced to protect a skate park from being vandalised after it was repaired once more.
The skate park in Lake Meadows, Billericay, has always been a target of vandalism.
The latest attack was in early summer when the skate park had to be closed after vandals wrecked the end panel of the wooden ramp.
The damage has been repaired but during the reconstruction work the contractors discovered further damage to the main surface caused by wear and tear. This has also been repaired.
Jim Devlin, Billericay Town Council chairman, said:
“Our aim is to take away the ‘joy’ for perpetrators by repairing the damage as soon as possible. Once they know the council responds swiftly, they won’t have any satisfaction in knowing their ‘handiwork’ is there. Repairing this damage costs money. I don’t understand why people do these things because it hurts the community, especially the people who use the skate park.”
Mr Devlin encourages residents to report any vandalism they see to the police and council.
“The more quickly the council responds to the crime, the perpetrators will be discouraged to target the skate park.”
Mr Devlin said the skate park sometimes attracts the wrong crowd because the place is a suitable spot for congregation.
“We can’t close the park at night because there’s a public footpath next to it. This footpath leads people directly to the train station. Summer, in particular, is a bad time. A couple of years ago there were thousands of pounds worth of damages done to the park.
They smashed it up, it was very serious damage.
“We had to fence it off for repairs and it was out of action for a couple of months. It’s disappointing people do these things.”
Article by Hsin-Yi Lo, The Echo