THOUSANDS of pounds worth of damage has potentially been caused to public spaces in Ludgershall due to vandalism and anti-social behaviour.

Ludgershall Town Council has warned that it will be the taxpayers of the town who will be forced to foot the bill after vandals have blighted the Recreation Ground and Jubilee Gardens.

This comes after the council has recently spent £10,000 on play facilities in the Recreation Ground which were defaced shortly after the workmen installing them left the site.

Mayor of Ludgershall Town Council, councillor Mike Giles, said: “The town council has recently spent £10,000 on installing a new play surface and within an hour of the contractors being off site it was dug up."

Vandalism has also resulted in the town’s commemorative gardens being closed for the foreseeable future.

The town council initially took the decision to close Jubilee Gardens last autumn following complaints from neighbours of youths making noise, driving cars and riding motorbikes in the gardens and general antisocial behaviour.

The gardens were reopened in May this year but the town council was again forced to close the gates again after a month following further reports of antisocial behaviour.

This included evidence of drug and alcohol use, damage to the perimeter fence, bins and sundial which had to be removed.

Vandalism has been a longstanding problem in the town with costs to the town council running into the thousands.

Cllr Giles added: “The police are fully aware of the situation and have agreed to step-up patrols in the area but we have got to get the contractors back to repair the damage and that will mean the costs being met by the taxpayers of Ludgershall once again.”