'Pure unadulterated vandalism' as pavilion trashed by vandals

PUBLISHED: 12:47 04 July 2019 | UPDATED: 17:27 04 July 2019

Items were overturn and plates broken by vandals. Picture: Dean Stewart

Items were overturn and plates broken by vandals. Picture: Dean Stewart

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Shocking images show the damage caused by vandals who 'trashed' a village pavilion.

A scene of the mess left behind by vandals. Picture: Dean StewartA scene of the mess left behind by vandals. Picture: Dean Stewart

It is the second such incident this week at Tipton St John Pavilion and has been slammed by town councillor Lyn Harding as 'pure unadulterated vandalism.'

Jo Earlam, from the pavilion committee, filmed the aftermath of the damage caused on Wednesday night (July 3) which shows paving slabs pulled out the ground, a microwave dumped in the river and paint thrown in a number of rooms.

In the video, Mrs Earlam said: "This is our playing field pavilion that has been trashed last night by vandals.

"As you can see this is the kitchen and there is paint everywhere. Everything is tipped over.

Vandals smashed windows on Wednesday evening. Picture: Dean StewartVandals smashed windows on Wednesday evening. Picture: Dean Stewart

"Walking into our main meeting room, there is paint on the windows.

"Things have been smashed on the floor. Going into the next room a window that was smashed is being repaired.

"This is the bench outdoors. Another bench overturned and the paving slabs pulled up. "Here is the final indignity; our microwave is in the river, a chair and cutlery. [It is] such a beautiful spot, why would anybody do that to this place?"

At Monday's Ottery Town Council meeting, members said the pavilion committee could request for help to return the building to 'top condition'.

A bench was left on its side. Picture: Dean StewartA bench was left on its side. Picture: Dean Stewart

Councillor Lyn Harding told The Herald: "This is pure unadulterated vandalism.

"We do not normally have trouble; we have the odd bit here and there but nothing like this."

Members of the community and Tipton Playing Field Association carried out a clear up operation on Monday after the pavilion was broken into for the first time. Entry was gained by smashing a double glaze window, and was paint thrown around the kitchen.

Outside the pavilion a first aid kit, cricket memorabilia and a bench were thrown in the river. The glass on the tennis court notice board was smashed and picnic tables were overturned.

Glass was found on a bench and on the floor after vandals struck at the pavilion. Picture: Dean StewartGlass was found on a bench and on the floor after vandals struck at the pavilion. Picture: Dean Stewart

A number of cricket trophies have been reported missing.

David Birch, chairman of the Tipton Playing Field Association, said: "Events like this are infuriating because of the sheer pointlessness of it. There was nothing of value to steal so it's difficult to imagine what the perpetrators gained from their actions.

"The positive thing from our point of view was the way people from the village and playing field committee rallied round instantly to clear up the mess and recover the items that were thrown in to the river.

"Apart from the boarded-up window, you wouldn't know that anything had happened."

Anyone with information should contact Devon and Cornwall Police by emailing 101@dc.police.uk or calling 101 quoting CR/058535/19.

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