Bruce Porter Reserve vandalism

Target for vandals: Laurieton resident Jeff Loch said it's too dark at night to take note of the vehicles which are causing the damage to Bruce Porter Reserve.
Target for vandals: Laurieton resident Jeff Loch said it's too dark at night to take note of the vehicles which are causing the damage to Bruce Porter Reserve.

Laurieton residents are concerned about vandals who are choosing to repeatedly target the grounds at Bruce Porter Reserve. 

Jacqueline Layton lives opposite the reserve and said she has written to the Port Macquarie-Hastings Council about the ‘anti social behaviour’ of people who drive ‘recklessly under cover of darkness, perform doughnuts and sharp manoeuvres’.

Mrs Layton said this results in surface damage, long ruts and a large amount of turf and soil is displaced. 

“This not only creates an eyesore but is also an activity which is potentially dangerous,” she said. 

“It is only a matter of time before a pedestrian crossing the reserve in the evening or the vehicle drivers themselves are injured by this practice.

“Especially because the lights of the vehicles are usually switched off when they are on the reserve.”

Resident Julia Reynolds also lives opposite the reserve and has questioned why the vandalism is not a priority for Port Macquarie-Hastings Council as a lot of time is spent mowing, weed spraying and on edging to make it look pristine. 

The residents would like deterrents put in place such as floodlights and night cameras. They said these have reportedly been met with some success in other council areas.

They said another approach would be to install bollards. These are in place around the nearby sports fields and the adjacent reserve.

Mrs Layton said they received a response from the Port Macquarie-Hastings Council who said the damage to the reserve was ‘largely superficial’.

Port Macquarie-Hastings Council group manager recreation and buildings Liam Bulley said council staff are aware of the incidents.

“Staff have inspected the site after reported incidents and noted that damage has not been significant to date,” he said. 

“While it is possible to spend funds on installing bollards along the perimeter of the reserve to prevent people driving into the reserve, this is not considered a priority at this point in time.

“Council would encourage neighbouring residents and the local community to contact police should matters of vandalism or hooning arise.”

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