Vandals criticised for damaging new bench

With its paintwork all scratched, this specially-made bench was damaged by mindless vandals just a day after it was placed at a coastal spot.

Friday, 4th November 2016, 12:13 pm
Updated Wednesday, 16th November 2016, 3:51 pm
The damaged bench in Amble.

The seat was installed on the Links, in Amble, on the afternoon of Friday, October 28, and by the Saturday, it had been targeted by thugs.

The bench was donated to the town council by Sodexo Justice Services after it had been made by some of the inmates in their metal workshop at HMP Northumberland, Acklington.

The damage, which includes the name Joe carved into the metal work, has been condemned and criticised.

Mayor of Amble Jane Dargue expressed her dismay at the vandalism, describing it as soul-destroying.

She said: “I am really saddened and frustrated by this.

“Yet again a small minority of mindless vandals have destroyed something made for the community. ‘Joe’, whoever you are, I hope you feel very proud.”

She added: “We will try to get it repaired, because we have to do something with it. We will go back to Sodexo, who kindly donated the bench, and see what they can do. We want it to be a nice community asset.”

The town council posted the picture on its Facebook page, drawing an angry response from social-media users.

One critic posted: ‘Soul-destroying – especially when so much effort has been made to improve the image of our lovely town’, while another wrote: ‘Grow up children, it’s your town you’re destroying.’

A third added: ‘Should be inside the prison the horrible things! No respect.’