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If vandals keep attacking Donington park is it time for villagers to pay for its upkeep?

Parish councillors and hard working volunteers are appealing to residents to respect Flinders Park.

The park, named after Donington’s most famous son, Matthew Flinders, is run by volunteers from IDEA, whose task to keep it going is made harder by vandals trashing equipment.

Latest incidents include litter bins being set on fire.

IDEA (Improving the Donington Environment for All) fundraises and applies for grants to equip the park - and that means villagers aren’t paying a single penny through council tax for its upkeep.

Library picture: IDEA committee members Peter Lorimer, Gill Lunn and David Hawkins pictured earlier this year at Matthew Flinders Park.
Library picture: IDEA committee members Peter Lorimer, Gill Lunn and David Hawkins pictured earlier this year at Matthew Flinders Park.

Parish councillor and IDEA team member David Hawkins told councillors that Sutton Bridge Parish Council had just agreed to spend £8,000-plus to renew safety surfacing at its local park - while IDEA finds those kind of sums through fundraising and grant applications.

Coun Hawkins said: “It’s going to get to the time where I propose that the people of Donington might have to pay something for the park, which they don’t do now.”

Coun Gill Lunn, also a member of the IDEA team, said the vandalism is worse during the light nights and the school holidays.

She said a PCSO had carried out patrols - and “spoken to a lad who was attacking another boy” - but the troubles are continuing.

Coun Phil Lovell wanted to see parents taking more responsibility for their children’s actions, saying the problems start at home.

Chairman Coun Arthur Baldwin told the meeting: “The village is expanding. We have got new people coming in.

“If they don’t look after the facilities they will lose them.”

Last month an exasperated parish and district councillor, Jane King, put a post on Facebook about the park troubles - and described the vandals as “mindless morons” after they pulled up plants, destroyed flower beds and kicked in the door on the tool shed.

Donington Parish Council hears of intimidation and vandalism in Flinders Park


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