Vandals target community space in Luton
A community group to help children enjoy the outdoors in Luton has been targeted again by vandals.
Kerry Ryan set up Our Garden of Chance at the corner of Whitehorse Vale and Underwood Close, she wanted to create a space to provide a range of outdoor activities for children, families and the local community.
But, over the last few weeks, the area has been targeted by vandals setting fire to logs, a table and chairs and more recently the round house.
She said: “It’s derelict land and my friend used to look after it before he passed away, I have since taken over and have been tidying it up.
“Since last summer I have been going there with volunteers and cleaning up the area, we have had children come down, help us tidy and also make dens and take part in outdoor activities. It has been a good way of getting children playing outside.
“Recently, we have had people coming here and setting fire to things, they have set fire to the tables and chairs in the round house, they take logs and set those on fire and recently they actually set fire to the roof of the round house,
“That is there to teach the children about history, and they have destroyed the part of the structure, it is not right!
“We are trying to do something positive for the community, we have no funding, is is just volunteers, we are looking to get solar panelled CCTV installed, but that is £400, and we just don’t have it.
“We are looking for any businesses or organisations that want to help us, if we can get some funding we can get the CCTV in to try and deter the vandals that are ruining the area. It would also mean we can do more things here and activities to benefit everyone.
“We are just volunteers who come here every Saturday, anyone is welcome to come and join us.
“The vandals will not put us off, I want to give the youths something positive to do, it is sad what has happened but we will not give up.”
Police are appealing for anyone who saw any suspicious behaviour in the area to report it to the police on 101.
Community Sergeant Barry Smith said: “We are aware of the ongoing issues of vandalism in the community garden area in Whitehorse Vale in Luton.
“We are fully supportive of the community attempts to rehabilitate the area and create a clean and safe space for families to spend time together.
“Our officers have attended the area to provide some reassurance to the residents.”
For more information about Our Garden of Chance visit: www.facebook.com/Our-Garden-of-Chance-292876397984617/