Plea for help after vandals wreak havoc at Dudley adventure centre again

An adventure playground has been targeted by vandals and thieves in a series of attacks.

The vandals bent the wheels on one of the go-karts on site
The vandals bent the wheels on one of the go-karts on site

The latest break-in at Sycamore Adventure in Dudley took place on Wednesday.

Those responsible have caused significant damage to the playground, destroying wooden panels, cutting through fencing and even bending the wheels of a pedal go-kart.

The incident has been described as "the worst one yet" and has resulted in a lot of damage which will need funding in order to be put right.

Sycamore Adventure offers youngsters, whatever their ability, the opportunity to experience indoor and outdoor play.

Wooden panels were destroyed

Outside there are sunken trampolines, play structures, a sand pit and boat, a carved dragon, swings, slides and accessible water features.

Over the last few months, the playground has been targeted numerous times, seeing go-karts being stolen and holes being cut in perimeter fences.

Donna Haddock, volunteer at Sycamore Adventure: "We normally just brush ourselves off put on a smile and carry on as normal for the children.

"This was the worst one yet and caused an awful lot of mindless damage that is going to take a little more than a few nails and wood to be able to fix.

"We rely heavily on customer donations to keep the centre going so have little in the way of money to now fix the damage caused from this latest break-in.

"They broke into our storage area through the back of the waterfall by kicking in the panels and then breaking the wheels off the go-karts we have left.

"Along with damaging the locks and door in the process.

The centre offers a place for children to experience indoor and outdoor play

"The staff have been amazing and worked really hard today to make it safe for the centre to open so as not to disappoint all the children that were coming to us today."

Staff have now started a fundraising page in hopes of raising money for the repairs.

Donna added: "We need to replace the panelling that was destroyed in gaining entry as well as look into a more secure door to stop this being repeated again.

"If you are able to help in any way at all that would be fantastic and would mean so much to us. Be it money or helping us out with materials would be brilliant.

"We love what we are able to offer here at Sycamore as we are very unique and we want to be able to continue to do so for many years to come and many more children enjoy being able to play free."

The page has seen a lot of interest, having already raised more than £1,000 in less than 24 hours.

Joanna Hipkiss, who works with children who use the playground, said: "Sycamore is such a huge part of the community and for some children with special needs it's their world.

"I work in a school where this place gives the children an opportunity to explore and experience things that they usually can't do.

"It's a safe space for them to enjoy the outside environment and for mom's and dad's to meet up with other people who actually understand. I can't believe that this has happened again."

West Midlands Police has been contacted for comment.

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