Councillor appeals to parents
Vandalism at Seed Garden escalating
TED BROWN Staff Writer With a recent increase in vandalism at the Old Seed House Garden, Friends of the Old Seed House Garden committee members Belinda Gallagher and Wards 3 and 4 Regional Councillor Jane Fogal are not only annoyed, but concerned. "The first incident started on Devil's Night (October 30) last year," said Gallagher, "Someone kicked out some of the spindles in the railing of the gazebo. After that, there was only slight damage from time to time. "But since school has been out, it's a daily occurrence. Every day, we find more damage when we drop by to check out the garden. It's quite discouraging to have such a beautiful gar-
`The damage is becoming more destructive.'
-- Councillor Jane Fogal
den, yet seen it vandalized." "The damage is becoming more destructive," adds Fogal, "We're seeing rocks thrown in the pond, rocks used to smash light fixtures, and all sorts of damage to the gazebo, including smashing lights in the ceiling of it, as well as kicking out the spindles in the railings and carving graffiti into the picnic table.
"It's not only annoying, but very expensive," said Fogal. "At first we had plastic (planter) urns in the garden, and they were smashed, so we got some (more expensive) concrete ones, expecting them to be more durable-- they smashed them with rocks as well." Fogal feels that when the park was built and is maintained by volunteer efforts, it makes it difficult to maintain a "positive attitude among the volunteers" when they see their efforts destroyed almost every night. "I want to appeal to the parents out there," said Fogal, "If they know their kids are hanging out at the Old Seed House Garden, they might want to ask them what they've been up to when they're hanging out there late at night." See VANDALISM, pg. 4
Friends of the Old Seed House Garden committee members Belinda Gallagher (left) and Wards 3 and 4 Councillor Jane Fogal survey some of the damage that has been done recently at the park, as vandals have kicked out spindles on the gazebo railing.
Photo by Ted Brown
Vandalism to Seed House Garden costing Town thousands of dollars
Continued from pg. 1 Adding security cameras has been discussed and both Fogal and Gallagher agreed they will pursue the concept further. In addition, police presence will be stepped up to try and catch the vandals in the act. During the year, vandalism has cost the Town significant dollars. The cost to the Town of Halton Hills this year is about $5,000 to playground equipment alone, and graffiti removal has meant another $1,320 in staffing costs. To date, Fogal said vandalism to parks and playgrounds has cost the Town of Halton Hills around $10,000 in total, of which $2,000 alone has been spent on repairs to the Old Seed House Garden. "I think it's great to see young people using this park," said Fogal, "I see lots of high school students and young moms with their babies out here eating their lunch, enjoying the surroundings, and respecting the gardens-- that's what it was created for. "But when a handful of people are destroying it every night, it not only makes it less attractive to others, but places a financial burden on the taxpayers. There are only so many times we can replace things."