A senior Dundee councillor has blasted damage seemingly caused by a disposable barbecue at a city beauty spot.
There were reports of large crowds at Magdelan Green on Friday, the day Covid-19 restrictions were eased north of the border.
Speaking on Twitter, user Finlay Wilson posted a picture of scorched grass and a fire-damaged table at the West End site, which is Dundee’s oldest park.
— Finlay Wilson (@Scottishyogaboy) April 17, 2021
Fraser Macpherson, who represents the ward, told The Courier: “The sadness of this is, they’ve been there barely a week.
“There is new furniture going in City Square and an agreement was made with the Friends of Magdalen Green that some of the old furniture from City Square would be gifted to Magdalen Green, as well as other places in the city.
“Frankly, I’m no short of outraged at the wanton vandalism that’s happened overnight.
“It looks like some thoughtless individual has put a disposable barbecue on top of the bench, because some of the debris appeared to be from a disposable barbecue.
“Time and time again people are asked not to use disposable barbecues on park tables but a minority do not use the brain they were born with. There is also glass and litter strewn. It’s disgraceful.”
Mr Macpherson said he had been contacted by “dozens” of people since early this morning by email, phone and social media, and had in turn been in touch with Dundee City Council’s Environmental Management department, and Police Scotland.
He added: “Credit to environmental management, by 10am today they had been down and done a clean-up, because there was glass and other items lying about on the grass.
“I’ve asked council officers what the options are, going forward. The vast majority of the people who use the green use it responsibly, behave themselves and view it as the wonderful asset that it is.
“We can’t let the thoughtless minority win and what I don’t want to see is our parks devoid of tables and chairs, just because some idiot comes along and decides to vandalise.
“I’m very keen to see a very proactive police presence in the park. I’ve had loads of residents in touch, and the one message that’s coming through loud and clear is the need for policing resource. Because this isn’t the first instance we’ve had on the green.
“It’s sad for the majority of people who use the park responsibly, and, bluntly, for the council tax payer who ultimately picks up the cost.
“But it’s so sad. It’s only about a week ago I posted about the new tables and chairs arriving.”
Other people on social media voiced their disapproval.
On Twitter, Alan Lambie commented: “Add in the broken glass strewn across the grass next to it. This area is used by people to exercise themselves and walk their dogs. Health hazard. People are trash.”
Add in the broken glass strewn across the grass next to it. This area is used by people to exercise themselves and walk their dogs. Health hazard. People are trash.
— Alan Lambie (@AlanLambie) April 17, 2021
Chris Davies said: “This breaks my heart. Why destroy something that is there for people to use? Horrible.”
On Facebook, Shelley Grant said: “That’s so disappointing. They were a great new feature.”
Alison Caddick added: “Very sad, shameful behaviour.”
Police were called last month after more than 200 people gathered at the park on St Patrick’s Day (see video below).
On Friday, the coronavirus rules in Scotland eased, allowing people to meet in groups of up to six adults from six households in outdoor settings.
In addition, people are now permitted to travel across Scotland as long as they do not stay overnight.
However, while travel is permitted for outdoor socialising, recreation and exercise, people must continue to stay local for other purposes such as non-essential shopping or attending hair appointments.