Community leaders condemn vandalism of Haworth's new bandstand

From left, Gillian Hill of Friends of Haworth Central Park and Councillor Rebecca Poulsen next to the damaged bandstand power supply

From left, Gillian Hill of Friends of Haworth Central Park and Councillor Rebecca Poulsen next to the damaged bandstand power supply

First published in News

COUNCILLORS and community campaigners have responded angrily to an attack on Haworth Central Park’s new bandstand.

The facility was launched earlier this summer following years of campaigning and fundraising.

However, some time last Friday night, vandals smashed the stonework that houses the bandstand’s electricity supply. A door was bent back to expose the power switches. And the following night, hanging baskets put up to decorate the bandstand were torn down.

Gillian Hill, of the Friends of Haworth Central Park, said: “It is such a shame a minority have spoilt it for the majority.

“Many residents have registered their amazement and shock at the mindlessness of this act.”

She said a resident living nearby had reported hearing a party in the park, with music being played during the early hours of Saturday. She added: “It could have been an impulse end-of-term and exams celebration. Hopefully, we will soon find out.

“The toilet attendant who opened up the public toilets in the park at 9.30am last Saturday discovered the damage when he did his usual walkabout.

“We were able to switch off the master switch making it safe.

“There was evidence of alcohol involvement as there were bottles, cans and many bottle tops scattered about.

“Then on the Saturday night, four of the six hanging baskets were torn down from the bandstand. We’ve no evidence to say it was the same people responsible.”

Worth Valley Ward councillor Rebecca Poulsen said: “It’s atrocious and shocking. Just mindless thuggery – there’s no need for behaviour like this.

“If people want to use the bandstand then of course they can do so, but not in this way.

“So many people have spent years fundraising and campaigning to get the bandstand, and it’s very upsetting for everyone involved with the project.”

A West Yorkshire Police has spokesman said: “We are investigating a report of criminal damage to an electrical junction box in Central Park, Haworth.

"Anyone with information is asked to contact the Keighley Area Neighbourhood Team on 101 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.”

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