Church Hall Targeted by Persistent Vandalism

Country: United Kingdom

Date of incident: August 25, 2023

The Loyola Centre in Wishaw, a community church hall adjacent to St Ignatius’s Church, has become the target of ongoing vandalism. Young vandals caused significant damage over the summer of 2023, including throwing stones, rocks, and bricks at the center's windows.

The hall, renovated and refurbished for 800,000 pounds before the Covid pandemic, has suffered repeated acts of vandalism, including smashed windows and property damage.

Volunteers, including Marc, the premises' manager, reported escalating issues since just before the school holidays, with vandalism occurring almost daily. The perpetrators believed to be young teenagers, have even disrupted events held within the hall.

Despite efforts by volunteers and police intervention, the vandals continued to evade significant consequences due to their young age, leaving volunteers frustrated and the community hall vulnerable to further damage. Marc highlighted the strain on resources and the impact on the community, urging parents to take responsibility for their children's actions and emphasizing the hall's role as a resource for the entire community.

CCTV installed to deter vandalism has captured repeated incidents, leading to concerns for the safety of vulnerable adults and children who utilize the hall.

Sergeant Chris Grey of the Wishaw & Shotts' Community Policing team assured ongoing collaboration with volunteers and local authorities to address the issue, emphasizing the seriousness with which the police take reports of antisocial behavior.

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