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Anger as vandals target Belle Vue Park leaving cafe without power


By Priya Kingsley-Adam


Vandals have been condemned for their mindless actions after a community park in Sudbury was targeted last weekend.

A group of vandals smashed their way through a wall in Belle Vue Park, leaving a neighbouring cafe without power.

Nichola Layzell, who runs The Cabin, selling refreshments and ice cream, has lost hundreds of pounds in stock as a result of the incident.

“It has a knock-on effect,” she said. “It has affected my business and it’s my livelihood.”

A wall in Belle Vue Park has been damaged, which has effected the cafe....PICTURE: Mecha Morton .... (19406107)
A wall in Belle Vue Park has been damaged, which has effected the cafe....PICTURE: Mecha Morton .... (19406107)

Mrs Layzell said she was disappointed that it looked as though the perpetrators had intentionally set out to cause maximum damage.

“The most shocking aspect is that it was premeditated. It was a solid brick wall – it didn’t just come down by someone giving it a kick,” she said.

To serve as a deterrent against further vandalism, Mrs Layzell would like to see CCTV cameras installed in the park.

“It wouldn’t necessarily stop it from happening again, but it would make people think twice before doing it and there would be a recording to prosecute vandals,” she said.

Praising the park as a treasured green space in the town, Mrs Layzell stated that the recent incident had not reflected the sentiments of the wider community.

“Everybody wants the park to be the best it can be and a lot of people work hard,” she added.

With schools set to break up for half-term, Mrs Layzell is hoping the power supply will be restored at the cafe in time when a large number of families are expected to visit the park.

A wall in Belle Vue Park has been damaged, which has effected the cafe....PICTURE: Mecha Morton .... (19406105)
A wall in Belle Vue Park has been damaged, which has effected the cafe....PICTURE: Mecha Morton .... (19406105)

Town and district councillor Jan Osborne expressed her disappointment over the incident.

“Any act of vandalism is so sad and unnecessary, especially in Belle Vue Park, where there is a need for people to share the space,” she said. “It’s even more of a shame that some people have found it necessary to damage the wall.”

Cllr Osborne, who has pledged her support for plans to build a hotel on the park’s site, stated that the proposals could help to reduce vandalism.

“It will probably eliminate it, if not, it could reduce the amount of anti-social behaviour in the park,” she said. “We would have more activity in the park and it would give the whole area much more security.”

Addressing the possibility of installing CCTV, Cllr Osborne gave assurances that she would raise the issue at a future meeting of Babergh District Council.

She said she would like to see additional CCTV cameras installed in the town to combat fly-tipping and littering, having already requested they were installed after work on the BMX skate park was completed.

Deputy town mayor Jack Owen called for tighter security measures to be put in place, but said he recognised policing resources were stretched.

Cllr Owen, who is opposed to any plans to build a hotel on the park’s site, has dismissed claims that it would improve security.

“I don’t think it would do anything to secure it and we can’t ask a hotel chain to secure the park,” he said. “It might secure the front entrance, but it wouldn’t secure the main park.”

To report information about the incident, call Sudbury Police, quoting reference 37/62470/19.


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