Harleston’s MUGA reopens — but now car park is subject of damage

Vandalism at Harleston Recreation Ground ANL-160629-160114009
Vandalism at Harleston Recreation Ground ANL-160629-160114009

Harleston’s multi use games area (MUGA) has reopened after it was vandalised earlier this year — but now a car park in the town is set to be locked up outside of working hours due to “nuisance behaviour.”

The MUGA, situated at the Recreation Ground off Wilderness Lane, cost Redenhall with Harleston Town Council £80,000 up front. But after a number of glass bottles were thrown into it on a night in June, the council was forced to close it off to the public for their safety.

Vandalism at Harleston Recreation Ground ANL-160629-160139009

Vandalism at Harleston Recreation Ground ANL-160629-160139009

While this has reopened — and the council confirming a sheltered seating area for young people close to the MUGA has been reinstated as a “goodwill gesture” — chairman Barry Woods said it was now the Recreation Ground’s car park that is being damaged.

“Unfortunately, we now have young drivers bringing their cars into the Recreation Ground car park and behaving in a way that is not only causing a nuisance it is damaging the car park surface,” he said.

The car park will be locked outside of working hours, although the council said there would be a “delay” in its implementation as it attempts to notify the public.

“The Council will always try to follow its policy of providing the maximum facilities for everyone, but sometimes our hands are forced by those who would destroy items in the Recreation Ground,” he continued.

“If anyone has information concerning the people causing problems they can always come into the office, or if they wish to remain anonymous they can leave a message in a sealed envelope in the gym marked ‘for the attention of Councillor Woods’.”

Cars locked inside the car park can call out a member of council staff to release their vehicle, although this will incur a charge. From October 1, the Recreation Ground car park will be open from 6.30am from Monday to Friday and 8am on Saturday and Sundays, and will be locked at 9.30pm every day.

A rotunda on the Recreation Ground, also used by young people, is set to be repaired in the near future.