VANDALS damaged charity allotments in York in an attack condemned as “vile and despicable”.

One of the allotments in Ashton Lane off Holgate Road is run by Lollipop, which helps children with hearing problems and works with their families, and which has just celebrated its tenth anniversary.

Mark Hunter from the charity said the damage was significant, and the ‘Lolliplot’ allotment was just one of several targeted.

He said: “I was working at the office and our gardener called to say he’d gone up there to do some maintenance because we use it for various activities with children, nature discovery and that kind of thing, in a nice safe and peaceful environment. 

“He discovered the shed had been broken into with a considerable degree of force and the contents of the shed had been scattered around the plot.

“There was also evidence that a fire had been lit on the plot itself.” 

Mr Hunter said the incident was a “vile and despicable act of vandalism”, and said he hoped police would be able to track down the culprits.

He said: “It is a sad reflection on our society that there are people out there whose sole purpose in life appears to be the wanton destruction of beauty and the fruits of the labour of others - even more so when the target of their contemptible behaviour impacts upon young children.

“It all costs us money, so the impact on what we can do is that money could have been spent in a way that would benefit people in providing activities or assistance for children with hearing loss and their families.

“We’re not a big charity and every penny counts having to spend money to put right things
that shouldn’t be wrong in the first place means less to be spend on a good cause.”

A spokesman for North Yorkshire Police confirmed a number of allotments off Holgate Road had been targeted by vandals but no arrests have yet been made.

He asked anyone with information about the attacks to phone the force on 101.