Hartlepool play area to get CCTV after vandal attack

Phil Hepburn, Hartlepool Council Environmental Enforcement Team Leader, Garry Jones, the Councils  Team Leader, Operations, Grounds Maintenance, Councillor Paul Beck and Rob Kendon beside the damaged bandstand.
Phil Hepburn, Hartlepool Council Environmental Enforcement Team Leader, Garry Jones, the Councils Team Leader, Operations, Grounds Maintenance, Councillor Paul Beck and Rob Kendon beside the damaged bandstand.

A children’s play area on a Hartlepool housing estate that has been targeted by vandals is to get extra protection with the addition of a CCTV camera.

The camera will be installed at Hartfields Play Area on the Bishop Cuthbert estate after funding was agreed by councillors.

Just last week, the Mail reported how the play park suffered extensive damage including the destruction of 10 semi-mature trees, worth about £2,000, and an aluminium roof panel was dislodged from a bandstand.

Teenage vandals have been blamed for the attack after a gang of up 50 youths was seen in the area.

Hartlepool Borough Council is to spend £83,230 on three new CCTV cameras at different locations.

As well as Hartfields Play Area, cameras linked to the council’s Community Monitoring Centre will be installed at the car park behind St Patrick’s shopping parade on Owton Manor Lane, and one at the junction of Borrowdale Street and Kathleen Street in Foggy Furze.

The council’s Finance and Policy Committee approved the camera funding as part of £185,000 spending plans.

Councillor Paul Beck, who sits on the finance committee and represents Bishop Cuthbert, said after the latest vandal attack: “This is just the latest in a series of incidents at the play park, but it is certainly the most serious.

“We are receiving lots of complaints from many of the young families living in the area that their enjoyment of what is an excellent community facility is being spoiled by vandals.”

He added the addition of CCTV should make a difference and will ask the police to treat the play area as a ward priority.

Other spending approved by councillors included £36,380 improvement works to Hartlepool Enterprise Centre, in Brougham Terrace, with the majority to go towards replacing a large number of windows.

And funding totalling £64,000 was approved comprising £54,000 of works to the roof and £12,000 on four new sets of external double doors.