PSNI probe after 'unusual thefts and vandalism' at popular Tannaghmore Gardens and animal farm says Armagh, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council
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New signage is to be erected in the Tannaghmore Gardens after a number of thefts and vandalism in and around the Animal Farm facility.
It follows the theft of at least seven signs, some of which included details of opening hours, and led to some visitors being locked into the facility after closing time.
A Council spokesperson said: “Throughout the year, the open farm attracts thousands of visitors, many of them regular visitors, who come to view the huge array of livestock which includes chickens, pigs, goats, sheep, cattle and donkeys. Despite the shortening days, many people still come along to see the rare breed animals return to their winter accommodation on the farm.
"However, in recent months the park has been the target for a series of unusual thefts and vandalism, which have caused concern for staff at the farm which is run by Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council.
"Some of the signs which were stolen, included details of opening hours, which caused some new visitors to the site to be locked inside the facility after closing time,” said the spokesperson.
"A large wooden gate close to the farm which prevents vehicles from driving on to the busy pedestrian and cycle path, was also completely destroyed by vandalism, causing a potentially serious health and safety risk. In one night alone, seven signs were removed. The police have been notified and are investigating the series of incidents.”
The spokesperson added: “With the new signage and gate expected to arrive in the coming weeks, the public are being urged to report any suspicious activity in and around Tannaghmore Gardens, to council staff or by contacting police.
"Meanwhile, some of the familiar animals – particularly the donkeys and cattle - are busy preparing for their starring roles in the traditional Live Nativity staged in Tannaghmore Farm for Christmas.
"Entrance to the farm is free of charge and it is a great day out for the whole family. The farm is suitable for buggies and has accessible toilets and baby changing facilities. For information on the park, please visit - getactiveabc.com/parks/tannaghmore-gardens”