Investigation launched after carved swastika burnt into Stevenage school field

A police investigation has been launched following the act of vandalism, which happened at some poin

A police investigation has been launched following the act of vandalism, which happened at some point between Monday evening and Wednesday afternoon at The Thomas Alleyne Academy - Credit: Archant

A police investigation has been launched after a group of youths are believed to have trespassed onto a school field and burnt a swastika into the ground.

The carved symbol – associated with Adolf Hitler’s Nazi Party – was noticed at about 2pm yesterday on the playing fields of The Thomas Alleyne Academy in Stevenage High Street.

The vandalism

The academy’s executive principal Mark Lewis told the Comet that arrangements were being made today to dig up the symbol, which has been blackened after being set alight at some point between 8pm on Monday and yesterday afternoon.

He said: “We are appalled by the nature of the vandalism that has taken place on our field. While our site is secure and our students are safe during our extended opening hours, we have experienced problems with trespassers accessing our playing fields in the evenings and at weekends in the past. Last summer we installed additional fencing at great expense to the academy which was unfortunately vandalised within a month.

“We are currently exploring alternative options to secure this area outside of school opening hours and are working closely with the police regarding the specific acts of vandalism. If anybody has information about these incidents, please feel free to contact us on admin@tas.herts.sch.uk.”

Police confirmed today that the vandalism is being investigated.

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Sergeant Jim Moatt, of the Stevenage North Safer Neighbourhood Team, said: “We are aware of the issues regarding groups of youths congregating in the evenings in local playing fields and local officers have been regularly patrolling the area. Several youths have already been spoken to and advice given where appropriate regarding their behaviour. However we would ask local residents to contact us if they continue to have concerns regarding these groups and to detail as much information about their behaviour as possible.

“With regards to the swastika on the Thomas Alleyne playing fields, we are fully investigating this incident and would ask for any witnesses or anyone with any information which may help our inquiries, to contact the Stevenage Safer Neighbourhood Team on 101 as soon as possible. Alternatively you can contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.”

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