Anger as vandals target Oakham Canal

Ian Wood, left, and Michael Mulligan who are angry with vandals who have been trashing Oakham Canal.'Photo: MSMP011013-016ow
Ian Wood, left, and Michael Mulligan who are angry with vandals who have been trashing Oakham Canal.'Photo: MSMP011013-016ow
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Volunteers who help keep a section of canal clean and tidy are angry after the area has been repeatedly targeted by vandals.

During the last three months, vandals have thrown bins into Oakham Canal four times, kicked planks of wood off a fishing platform and pushed logs across a tow path.

Ian Wood and Michael Mulligan who are angry with vandals who have been trashing Oakham Canal.  Dog poo bag that has been thrown into the canal.'Photo: MSMP011013-014ow

Ian Wood and Michael Mulligan who are angry with vandals who have been trashing Oakham Canal. Dog poo bag that has been thrown into the canal.'Photo: MSMP011013-014ow

The bins have now been chained to trees to stop any further vandalism but last week the vandals removed bags of dog muck from one and threw them into the water.

Volunteer angling warden Ian Wood, 62, of Burley Crescent, Oakham said it took two hours to fish them out with a hook.

He said: “They seem intent on causing as much havoc and damage as they can.”

“Why would anyone want to get their hand in to a wheelie bin and get out poo bags. But they did and they threw about a dozen right into the middle of the water.

“I ask myself why have they done this. If it is to make me angry it has had the desired effect.”

“I was absolutely fuming when I found the latest damage.

“I really love it down there and I hate to see it going to rack and ruin.”

Mr Wood has seen two youths riding mountain bikes in the area on several occasions and believes they could be involved. He has informed police of the problems.

Mr Wood and his neighbour Michael Mulligan, keep the canal area near Burley Crescent up to scratch by mowing the grass, emptying the dog waste bins and keeping the paths clear.

Mr Wood said: “Oakham Canal has been a part of my life for more than 50 years. It is part of Oakham’s history and a treat for all who wander the tow path.”

Mr Wood said the canal was a great site for wildlife with water voles, grass snakes, herons, dragonflies, otters and a large array of fish regularly seen.