Cameras focused on park vandals

Three statues were stolen from the Italian Gardens in July last year and (below) Coun Debbie Coleman and Coun Jim Elmes at the site of CCTV cameras.
Three statues were stolen from the Italian Gardens in July last year and (below) Coun Debbie Coleman and Coun Jim Elmes at the site of CCTV cameras.
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SECURITY has been increased at Stanley Park in a bid to tackle vandalism.

Two of the park’s seven CCTV cameras have been replaced with state-of-the-art night-time vision monitors in order to catch culprits who strike after dark.

Coun Debbie Coleman and Coun Jim Elmes at the site of CCTV cameras.

Coun Debbie Coleman and Coun Jim Elmes at the site of CCTV cameras.

The cameras, which can scan 360 degrees, have been paid for out of the ward budget of Marton councillors Debbie Coleman and Jim Elmes.

They have allocated £6,759 for the new cameras in the park.

Coun Coleman said: “The existing cameras were put in when the park had its £5m Lottery-funded upgrade.

“However there have been a number of incidents of vandalism and damage in the park so we decided to use some of our ward budget for state-of-the-art new cameras.

“These ones are able to identify people even when it is pitch black and the images will be good enough for the police to use in prosecutions.

“The cameras are being monitored both from the small police station in the park, and from the main police headquarters in Blackpool.

“Officers are delighted with them and say the images are of fantastic quality.”

Coun Elmes said: “People are fed up of the vandalism which has happened in the park and we feel this will help combat it.

“Stanley Park is one of the main assets for the people of Blackpool but CCTV cameras are expensive.

“However we feel this is a good use of our ward funds.”

It is hoped to eventually upgrade all the cameras.

There has been a spate of vandalism in the park.

Last month £2,000 of damage was caused to boats, while the famous lions have had to be removed from the Italian Gardens to protect them from metal thieves who had already damaged other statues.

CATALOGUE OF VANDALISM AT STANLEY PARK

August 1 - Vandals caused £2,000 of damage to boats on the boating lake.

July 25 - The weather vane on top of the Stanley Park cafe was destroyed.

July 18 - Ornaments were damaged near North Lodge.

July 16 - The historic lions had to be removed from Stanley Park in order to protect them from the risk of metal theft.

July 2011 - Three statues were stolen from the Italian Gardens by metal thieves.

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