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‘Malice’ behind vandalism at children’s farm

One of the vandalised signs for Herd Farm

One of the vandalised signs for Herd Farm

A Taxpayer-funded activity centre for schoolchildren has suffered thousands of pounds in losses after being targeted by “malicious” vandals.

Leeds City Council-run Herd Farm, next to Eccup Reservoir in Alwoodley, Leeds, installed signs on surrounding roads to give directions visitors.

But vandals wrecked one set – which had cost a total of £3,000 – and then returned to destroy the replacements.

Manager Tony Edwards said: “There’s no value in them. We can only think that it’s malicious and that certain people don’t want us promoting what we do.”

The farm has outdoor activity and residential facilities and welcomes thousands of children each year.

Signs were put up on King Lane to help people find the centre, which is situated off a semi-rural lane.

The first incident happened during Easter weekend when the signs were pulled down. The second set of signs suffered the same treatment and a canvas banner was slashed.

Mr Edwards added: “We believe it’s the same people.

“We are here as a good resource for the people of Leeds and all we’re doing is responding to the demand from our customers.

“This is criminal damage and it’s disappointing.”

Coun Mark Dobson, executive member for communities, said: “Herd Farm is a fantastic facility for children across the city and is often used by vulnerable children and those with extra needs, so it is very upsetting that these signs to advertise and direct people to the centre, are being purposefully removed.

“We are careful to use taxpayers’ money wisely but the people who are doing this are actually inadvertently wasting their own and other Leeds citizens’ money, as well as harming the centre.”

 

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