Residents outraged as yobs vandalize Rothbury playgrounds with obscene graffiti

Vandals in the picturesque Northumberland village of Rothbury have hit playgrounds with obscene graffiti

Riverside play area at Rothbury
Riverside play area at Rothbury

Yobs have left obscene graffiti and Nazi images at playgrounds in a Northumberland village.

Images including the swastika symbol and offensive drawings and words were scrawled on equipment at Riverside and Addycombe play areas at Rothbury.

Racist and homophobic words were daubed on slides and wooden apparatus at the sites.

The graffiti has been condemned by village councillors and residents.

It is believed the Riverside play area, which, like Addycombe, owned by Rothbury Parish Council, was targeted on Saturday night.


Villager Nicola Mason Crane, who has three grown up children, saw a photo of the graffiti at Riverside on social networking website Facebook on Sunday morning and headed there shortly afterwards with father Tom Mason, armed with cleaning equipment.

The pair scrubbed some of the graffiti from the play area, actions applauded by a village councillor.

She said: “My father had a stroke two weeks ago - we are born and bred in Rothbury and love the place and its history. We were disgusted by the graffiti and went straight down and cleaned it off.

“As soon as I saw it on Facebook I was mortified. It paints the village in a bad light. I got a load of cleaning stuff together and stopped to see my dad for father’s day on the way down to the park. Dad was upset and shocked when I told him what had happened and insisted that he came and helped clean it off.

“I spent many hours down there with my children when they were little. I campaigned and helped raised funds about 15 years ago to get fencing put up around the park to stop all of the dog fouling that was going on. It seems we need a new fence to keep mindless hooligans out now.

“We lived on the riverside when I was little and have so many fantastic memories of playing at the park.”

Northumberland county and parish councillor for Rothbury Steven Bridgett said: “We are about to form a group of parish councillors and interested parents with an aim of drawing down funding to build a new play park on the riverside in Rothbury.

“What is there at the moment is past its best and the floods have not helped.

“But when you see the equipment being defaced in this way it does make you ask the question: ‘Why should I bother?’

“I would like to extend my sincerest thanks on behalf of the community to Tom and Nicola Mason for taking time out of their Sunday to remove the graffiti – community spirit is still alive and well after all.”

Parish council chairman Mark Gilson said on Facebook: “Somebody must be able to name them. If they are named, I promise you that RPC will do all it can to make them pay.”

Tracey Bridgett added on the site: “This is awful. One day the idiots who did this will probably have children of their own, and I bet it wouldn’t be so funny if they took their kids to the park and had to explain something like this to them!”

The graffiti comes after a table was damaged by fire at Riverside play area last week. A picnic table at Beggars Rigg car park was also recently damaged by fire.


David Whetstone
Culture Editor
Graeme Whitfield
Business Editor
Mark Douglas
Newcastle United Editor
Stuart Rayner
Sports Writer