Calls for more police and support for young people to stop Armley Park vandalism

Arson attack in Armley Park playground two weeks ago. Photo: FoAP

By Grace Cooper

More community policing and support for young people could be the answer to repeat arson attacks at Armley Park, park users have said.

Armley Park playground continues to be a vandalism target, and many local residents are calling for preventative measures to warn off future attacks. 

Two weeks ago, vandals set fire to the playground in what was the third attack in the past year. The playground first opened in March 2022 and since then has been subject to constant damage and vandalism, even requiring equipment to be replaced after less than a year of being open. 

Following the latest arson attack, visitors to Armley Park say that police and wardens could be a solution to stop the vandalism occurring again.

armley park playground
Armley Park’s new playground.

Yvonne Forester said the answer is “more community police, because you never see them anymore.”

Sarah Currie, another visitor to the park, condemned the vandalism as “disgusting”. She said that wardens and a fence around the area could help, adding that “when it used to be the near main road hardly anything happened. But since it’s been moved to the top, you know, I think it’s a bit more secluded. So that’s why they’re doing it.”

Another resident agrees that the seclusion of the park could be playing a part in the vandals returning, Mussarat Waqar thinks there should be more CCTV.

“There’s so many trees that block the view so…I know its not nice to cut down, but some sort of way to make it more open,” she suggested. 

Other residents think that finding ways to draw young people away from taking part in vandalism is the solution. 

“Provide more places for the teenagers to go,” Nicola Scott said. “Maybe a bit more of an education as well, like the impact that it has on other children within the area.” 

Gary Woolling said there’s no control over the kids who also move on to damaging the golf course next to the playground. 

As reported by WLD last week, young people in the area are being asked to get more involved with Armley Park through the ‘Friends of Armley and Gotts Park’ volunteer group. 

The group shared images of the attack on their Facebook page, with many taking to the comments calling the vandalism a “disgrace”.

Commenters called for CCTV, with some saying they would be willing to contribute to a crowdfund to install cameras at the park.

Vandalism has also happened in recent months at Bramley Park and at Hainsworth Park and Farsley Recreation Ground. 

What do you think the answer could be to vandalism in our parks? Have your say in the comments below.


  1. The forty or so youngsters who attend the three weekly sessions at The Ministry of Boxing in Moorfield Road will NOT be amongst those doing the vandalism and the same can be said for those youngsters training at Camp Detox or Tobin’s Gym. It would be good to see direct subsidy of the boxing clubs so that more can be encouraged to participate in and benefit from the discipline taught and the physical mental and social friendship benefits that come from this most demanding of sports whether or not the trainee ever competes.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.