YOBS have caused more than £1,000 worth of damage at a popular community park.

Vandals have targeted Keekle Community Park, near Cleator Moor, on a number of instances over the past two months. Committee members have been left to pick up the pieces, along with the shocking repair costs.

The family park is a charity project run entirely by volunteers, and chairman Andrew Haslop is fed up with finding the park in such a sorry state.

“It’s just so disheartening,” he said. “The committee put in so much time and effort to make the park a nice place to visit, and we’ve had two benches destroyed within three weeks.”

On top of the broken benches, which were paid for using the Sellafield Snowball Fund, a gate has been ripped from its hinges, swings have been wound around so that they’re out of children’s reach, and empty bottles of alcohol have been left on the ground and thrown into the river.

The benches alone will cost more than £900 to replace – money that will have to be taken from the charity’s fundraising pot.

The latest incident at the weekend saw the vandals urinate down the slide.

The attacks mean that money which was earmarked to improve the park will now be used for repairs.

Mr Haslop added: “We raise the money through duck races, Easter egg hunts, all sorts of nice activities for families, and we wanted to buy new equipment for the park.

“Now we’re being forced to use thousands of pounds to repair things that were absolutely fine.”

The committee have been in touch with police to request increasing patrols in the area, and would also like to see CCTV installed, “but it’s all about costs”, Mr Haslop explained.

Witnesses should contact Cumbria Police on 101 or Copeland Council on 01946 598300.