Councillor slams 'mindless vandalism' outside pensioners' homes
A COUNCILLOR has hit out at "mindless vandalism" outside a Wick housing scheme where elderly people live.
"This is criminal damage to council property," Councillor Raymond Bremner said after it emerged that vehicles had been driven over the lawn area outside 57-67 Loch Street.
He has reported the damage to Highland Council and to the police.
Councillor Bremner also plans to take up the issue with the local authority's anti-social behaviour officer and says local councillors will undertake their own investigations.
The grassy area is a council property which comes under the remit of the Housing Revenue Account.
Councillor Bremner, who represents Wick and East Caithness on Highland Council, took photos of the damage and has spoken to some of the residents – describing them as "frightened pensioners".
On his Facebook page he said: "Now, you can't tell me that someone in the local community does not know the culprits that did this. Right in front of pensioners' houses, in the middle of a housing scheme, with a lot of noise and what looks like quad bike tracks or a small car."
He is calling on members of the public to come forward if they know anything about those who caused the damage, saying that they can report it to the police on Crimestoppers on 101, to the council, or directly to him.
Councillor Bremner is also appealing for local people to keep an eye on the area and take photos or videos if something similar happens again.
He said: "The council's officers have already inspected the area and will make arrangements to have repairs done until such time as we can make more substantive arrangements in the better weather next year.
We can't have improvements being made while criminal damage like this seeks to negate the good work.
"I will be asking for a protective fence to exclude people until such time as the area repairs itself.
"But we can't have improvements being made while criminal damage like this seeks to negate the good work.
"We need to work together to keep our communities safe and end this mindless vandalism."
Councillor Bremner was alerted to a similar situation in Keiss where damage to the football pitch was caught on camera. A vehicle was driven over the field last Thursday night, leaving muddy tyre tracks in the soft turf.
Residents have been concerned about parking in the village for some time and are calling for a car park to be made available for those going to events in both the school and community hall in High Street.
A Highland Council spokesperson said: “Vandalism of any council property is a senseless waste of council tax resources and diverts scarce resources away from frontline service delivery with the need to make essential repairs. We would urge anyone who witnesses vandalism being caused to phone the police on 101 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.”
The spokesperson said works have been instructed to rectify the damage.