Youth arrested after Aylsham Recreation Ground pavilion is vandalised
14:32 17 February 2014
Archant Norfolk 2013
A 17-year-old youth from the Aylsham area has been arrested and released on bail in connection with vandalism at the town’s recently-renovated pavilion.
Frustrated recreation ground chiefs had put up a £50 reward to help catch those responsible for trashing part of the building, on Aylsham Recreation Ground.
The door of the disabled toilet was kicked in and destroyed, three fire extinguishers had been let off and then thrown, together with tea-towels, on to the pavilion’s roof.
The building had just undergone a major £160,000 internal reconstruction which was only finished at the end of November, according to Gerry Grimes, chairman of Aylsham Recreation Ground’s management committee.
“I was really disappointed. It’s very frustrating because it was all brand new stuff. We will have to pay for a new door because it’s less than the excess on our insurance policy.
“You can’t get into the mind set of people who behave like that,” he added.
Mr Grimes believes more than one person may have been involved as the toilet door had been kicked from the inside. He speculated that someone had been trapped in there and had kicked their way out.
The damage happened sometime between 5pm on Friday January 24 and 11.30am on Saturday January 26 when it was discovered by footballers who had arrived to use the ground and pavilion.
The pavilion was an important part of community life, according to Mr Grimes. Its users included football and cricket teams, a yoga class, and home educators the Barefoot Learners.
Cash for the renovation came from a £100,000 Norfolk County Council grant, £50,000 from Sport England, and £10,000 from Broadland District Council.
A Norfolk police spokesman said the youth was due to report to Aylsham police investigation centre on March 16.
■ Anybody with information should contact PC Grieg Shepherd at Aylsham on 101.