THIEVES who ripped stone flags from Mirfield’s sunken garden over the bank holiday have been condemned.
Former mayor Coun David Pinder spoke out after damage worth thousands of pounds was caused.
The slabs, cemented on a low-slung wall at Calder House on Newgate, formed part of the sunken garden’s seating area.
It is believed an implement such as a crowbar was used to pull them off, and a wheelbarrow was left behind. The culprits may also have used a vehicle as the slabs are thought to be too heavy to carry away.
Coun Pinder was involved in the sunken garden’s creation, which transformed an overgrown plot into a beautiful public space.
He said: “The punishment for this should be more than just a rap over the knuckles.
“But no doubt it’ll be said whoever did this had a deprived childhood and they should get a community sentence.”
The wall was left unsafe, with a St Mary’s Church playgroup banned from the area in case it collapses.
Calder House is run by the Stonham Home Group, which supports homeless and vulnerable people.
The sunken garden was developed by Stonham with grants sourced by the Mirfield Community Partnership, which Coun Pinder chairs.
Environmental charity Groundwork helped residents and Stonham’s clients design the sunken garden.
Some of Stonham helpers gained qualifications through their work which helped them get jobs.
The Mirfield Community Partnership is currently involved in other public gardening projects around town.
Coun Pinder added: “At a time when we should be progressing those, we’ve now got to find fund repairs to the sunken garden.”