Vandals target park




Elliot Newspaper Group


VANDALS systematically smashed lights and set fire to rubbish bins in Atkinson Park between Sunday night and Monday morning. Twelve solar powered bollard lights lining the path through the park were smashed, some of them knocked off their stands. In the barbecue area, an overhead light was broken and another ripped from its wiring. A tree was also damaged, and a Scoresby Street street sign which had been removed from the corner of Nolan Street, was found lying on the lawn. The Gannawarra Shire has estimated the cost of the damage to be $65,000. The Kerang Fire Brigade were called to the park at 12.20am on Monday after rubbish bins were set alight. Kerang Police, First Constable Andrew Gibbs said it was likely the lights were smashed at around the same time. He said a wooden stake, found in the lake, looked likely to be the implement used to smash the lights. “It’s extremely disappointing to think that these individuals see fit to cause such damage to what is a park for the whole town,” Const Gibbs said. “It shows a total lack of respect not only for the park but also the town’s people.” New South Wales resident Clive Ashby, who is visiting his grandchildren in Kerang, said he regularly goes to the park with them and was distressed by the damage. “This is one of the best parks around for the kids,” Mr Ashby said. “It’s devastating to see this. It’s a shame, a real shame.” There are no closed circuit cameras installed at Atkinson Park. Police are appealing for anyone with information to contact them on 5452 1955.