Barbecue vandals target college site
Police are on the trail of vandals who are suspected of knocking down a wall at a Tiverton college – only to use the bricks to build a makeshift barbecue.
A wooden fence was also dismantled and burned as fuel at Petroc, Bolham Road, on what was one of the hottest weekend’s of the year so far.
The group are believed to be the same people responsible for stoning a duckling to death at the salmon ponds on the River Exe and tearing slates from a roof of a building at Westexe Recreation Ground.
And yobs have been warned their unruly behaviour will not be tolerated during the rest of the school break.
PCSO Rob Moss, based at Tiverton Police Station, said: “It appears they also took down a wooden fence and used the wood on the barbecue.
“After this initial incident, college staff took it down but the culprits came back on the following day and rebuilt it using the same bricks.”
PCSO Moss said chairs from within the site were gathered around the barbecue which was made in an area set aside for ‘sensory’ and horticultural work which is used by students including those with special educational needs.
Neil Hookway, Petroc’s director for resources, said: “It is very disappointing that vandalism has occurred at our Tiverton campus, especially as it was in an area set aside for sensory and horticultural work.
“The area is used by all our learners, including our supported learning students, who I’m sure will find the destruction of their work very upsetting.”
The initial incident occurred on the weekend of Saturday and Sunday July 20-21.
PCSO Moss said: “We are looking at CCTV but there is a huge amount to go through that covers that period so we are requesting witnesses or anybody with information to come forward.”
Members of the public have reported a number of incidents of anti-social behaviour at the salmon ponds, which are also close to the A361 North Devon Link Road and the A396 to Bampton.PCSO Moss said: “There have been allegations of a duckling being stoned to death, cows being harassed, fires being lit and people camping in tents – we suspect it is the same people.”
The criminal damage at Westexe Recreational Ground, where youths were allegedly seen pulling slates from the roof of a shelter, was believed to have occurred between 9.10pm and 9.30pm on July 6.He said: “The whole message we want to put across is we are in the school summer holidays now and we are aware of a number of acts of criminal damage and anti-social behaviour which are investigating.
“We are asking the public to be vigilant and to report any suspicious behaviour.”
Anybody with information regarding the incidents at Petroc are asked to call police on 101 KT/13/1183 and KT/13/1189.