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Friday, 29 August 2014

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Mystery of Barrow ‘Vandalgate’

BAFFLED police are searching for the key to unlock the case of a bizarre incidence of vandalism in Barrow.

S93425B
NOT AN OPEN AND SHUT CASE: Police are investigating damage to an alley gate lock between Robert Street and Lord Street S93425B

An alley gate between Robert Street and James Street was tampered with earlier in the month, preventing it from closing.

The gate’s locking mechanism was ruined when the perpetrator smothered it with some sort of handyman filler.

PC Eric McKinley said at this stage officers could only speculate at what had motivated the act, which will cost the taxpayer around £500 to fix.

“We believe it’s somebody local just by the nature of what’s been done,” he said.

“But whether somebody’s got a grudge because they don’t like the gates being shut, or somebody’s done it because they required access and didn’t have a key, we don’t know.”

Around 20 back streets in Barrow’s central ward, which stretches from Abbey Road to Salthouse Road, have been fitted with the security gates in the last couple of years. Residents are given a set of keys to allow them to access the back alley.

PC McKinley said police would eventually like to see gates on all the town’s alleyways because of their effectiveness in reducing crime and reassuring residents.

“They are an excellent deterrent to prevent crime and they make people feel safe and it makes it less accessible for anybody who wishes to enter into a back alley or premises,” he said.

“If children want to play out then parents – who should still supervise them – feel they’re slightly safer because they keep the children in one place and they’re also good for stopping fly-tipping.”

Anyone with information about the damage to the alley gates is asked to contact PC McKinley at the neighbourhood management office in Dalton Road, or by calling police on 101.

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