Askam and Dalton carnivals hit by ‘mindless’ theft
Last updated at 15:28, Tuesday, 07 June 2011
ORGANISERS of community events have blasted the theft of advertising banners as ‘mindless’.
Askam and Dalton carnival committees could be left hundreds of pounds out of pocket after signs promoting the spectacles were swiped from roundabouts on the A590 on Friday night.
Tie ropes used to put the banners in place at Elliscales and Crooklands were slashed before they were removed some time after 10pm.
It comes at a crucial time for Dalton Carnival as it is due to take place on Saturday and organisers say the banners are a key ingredient in attracting people to the event.
The Dalton banners are double-sided, with an advertisement for Dalton Medieval Fair, which takes place on June 18, on the reverse.
Police have been informed and are investigating the incident, but organisers have issued a plea to whoever took the banners to return them.
Neil McDougall, chairman of Dalton Carnival, said: “If we don’t get them back, we are going to have to replace them, which means we will have less money to give to charities.
“Our overheads are going up for running next year’s carnival already but more to the point, this will reduce the amount of money we donate to charities drastically.
“Whoever has stolen these has got to find it in their heart to give them back.
“They are taking charity money. It’s as simple as that.
“So much time and money goes into advertising these events.
“As chairman of the carnival, I don’t want to give my personal thoughts on these people, all I am interested in is getting the banners back.”
Mr McDougall has invited the culprits to hand the banners back anonymously.
He said: “All we are interested in is getting them back.
“We are not looking to prosecute but obviously if it comes to that, we will have to.”
It was a double blow for Askam Carnival committee, as it is the second time they have been victims of banner theft in just three years. Jill Heath, chairwoman of Askam Carnival committee, said: “It’s just mindless.
“It happened to Askam two years ago, meaning we had to replace them last year.
“I don’t know how much it cost us to replace them but it was a lot, and that’s money that we can’t give to charity.
“I don’t know whether they have done it out of spite or drunkenness. In some way or other we want them to return them.
“Or, if anybody knows anything about them, I would ask them to let us know.
“There are people who give their time and energy to running these community events and we don’t need this.”
First published at 13:06, Tuesday, 07 June 2011
Published by http://www.nwemail.co.uk
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