Sunday, 20 April 2008

Bandstand blues

The bandstand in the Town Gardens - picture taken earlier this month (5th April)
Thieves rip lead from bandstand
It is very rare for me to post a news item on this blog so this is a sad exception. Yesterday I walked through the Town Gardens in Old Town - a place of peace and tranquility loved by people of all ages.

I was appalled to find that thieves have ripped the lead from the roof of the bandstand. This is especially sad as only two years ago local residents raised £10,000 towards the cost of its renovation (with the remaining cost coming from the Landfill Tax Credit Scheme). It was reopened amidst much celebration on St George's Day (23rd April) 2006.

The gardeners at the Town Gardens were shocked and distressed when they made their discovery on Friday morning and visitors to the park have been moved to tears at the sight of the damage to the much loved Grade II listed bandstand.

I should not really comment on my thoughts about the perpetrators of this theft. Such activities are commonplace enough in our modern world, however, when it happens to somewhere that brought so much pleasure to so many people feelings of violation kick in.

The roof will be repaired and no doubt appropriate measures will be taken to protect it in the future. Hopefully it will be ready for the summer months when local brass bands play on Sunday afternoons and the scene becomes one that is quintessentially English - to be enjoyed by all.
[Acknowledgement to the Swindon Advertiser for the headline "Thieves rip lead from bandstand" and for some of the detail above which was reported in yesterday's edition]