PARENTS, children, members of the parish council in Lacock were left in shock after a new fence surrounding the play area was stolen.

Police issued a plea for information after the fence and gate to the play area disappeared over night of April 25-26.

“The thieves carefully unscrewed the fence,” said Parish Cllr Ron George, “they knew what they were doing.

He said somebody must know something about someone suddenly acquiring a new fence and he appealed for help in tracing the thieves.

Within days the fence was replaced as it meant the play would have been unusable as it is for small children.

He said: “The parish council, The National Trust and their contractor Playforce (TCL) of Melksham who fitted the site, are equally angered by this loss.

“It was a total disregard as a total disregard for the public safety of very small children.”

The cost of replacing the fencing is around £800 he said which was a substantial investment by the council and National Trust who jointly paid for the playground and fencing.

The playground had only just opened he said in time for the Easter school holidays.

He said: “The new equipment chosen for this site has been specially designed to provide maximum fun for children and had been fitted to be in place in time for the Easter period.

“A safety inspection had been carried out two weeks ago and the facility then opened for the public.

“The response has been overwhelming with Easter visitors to Lacock and local families

enjoying the play area in the fine weather.

“Members of Lacock Parish Council work hard to provide facilities for local residents and the partnership they maintain with the National Trust is an unusual and distinctive part of that work as it also benefits the many visitors attracted to the area.”