A FENCE to deter vandals near a community centre was vandalised itself - less than an hour after being put up.
And it took police three-and-a-half hours to turn up after the caretaker reported it on 999.
Thurcroft Parish Council decided to purchase £11,000 of two-metre palisade fencing for outside the Gordon Bennett Memorial Hall.
Chairman Cllr Jeb Nightingale said: “We decided to fence off the Gordon Bennett because of vandalism to the building. It’s been a problem for a while and we had £500 of damage to the roof recently.
“The company came on Monday to start putting up the fencing and within one hour it was vandalised. They really set about it.
“There were four sections which had been put in and they were left all over the floor.
“We were ringing for the police but it was three-and-a-half hours before they came, even with ringing 999.”
Caretaker Royce Hall said the first run of fencing, between the car park and play area on Green Arbour Road, had been finished less than an hour before he called the police because youths had started dismantling it.
He added: “I reported it at 4.45pm on 999. At about 5.25pm they called me back and asked if I was still there and if it was still happening.
“I said yes and the police asked if I had approached the youths that were doing this. I said no, of course I haven’t.
“By this time they had taken out the poles of the fence and were using them like spears.
“When the police arrived it was 8.18pm and it was just two volunteer officers who turned up.
“They never even got out of the car, they just talked to us.”
A South Yorkshire Police spokeswoman said no damage had been caused because the fencing panels had not yet been bolted together.
She added: “It was reported a group of around four teenagers had moved fencing panels. No damage was caused and an officer attended to conduct enquiries.”