Belfast Telegraph

East Belfast playground out of action following vandalism

Part of an east Belfast playground could be out of action for the rest of the summer after it was targeted by vandals.

Significant damage has been caused to Avoniel playground in east Belfast.

Gareth Beacom inner east manager of community group Charter NI said that local PUP councillor John Kyle had set up a meeting with the director of parks at Belfast City Council to discuss the issue.

"The main issue is the park is left open and there is no CCTV in the area," Mr Beacom said.

"The park remains open so that it can be accessed as often as possible but it just doesn't work in that area.

"There's kids coming from all over and they are just ripping the place apart. It's happened a couple of times and we have 50-60 kids from the local summer scheme who were supposed to use the facilities today and can't. It's shocking."

A Belfast City Council spokeswoman said while some of the park had reopened the full damage still had to be assessed.

“Last night, this play park was vandalised with damage caused to the soft ground surface. Our staff have worked throughout the day to restore the play facilities with the affected area of the playground now fenced off while assessment takes place on the damage and repairs," the spokeswoman said. 

"The rest of the park has re-opened for families. We will be engaging with the PSNI on the issue and would appeal to the public to report any incidences of anti-social behaviour in our parks to the police as well as our parks team.”

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