Vandals have struck at a picturesque Fife golf club, wrecking a putting green and furniture and causing £2,000 worth of damage.
Club officials at Balbirnie Park Golf Club in Markinch opened on Sunday to find a number of bins ripped from walls and crushed, one of the greens damaged and furniture missing.
The incident happened at the Balbirnie Park Golf Course sometime between 8pm on Saturday and 9.30am on Sunday.
An estimated £2,000 worth of damage was caused across the course with the greens, and associated fixtures and fittings being targeted.
Greenkeepers were called in to conduct an emergency repair in order for the club to remain open.
The incidents are the latest in a spate of vandalism and anti-social behaviour suffered by the club in recent months, prompting club officials to call for increased police patrols of the area in a bid to deter further damage.
Club captain, George Allan, said the club had suffered numerous incidents, despite increasing security at the course.
He said: “It’s hugely frustrating for the club’s staff who work tirelessly to keep the course in top condition.
“Saturday’s damage included bins ripped from the walls, which were crushed and then dug into the turf on one of our green.
“I’m at a loss to see how anyone can get pleasure out of such destruction.
“Our greenkeepers had to undertake an emergency repair and did a great job so members could continue playing.
“Tee markers and flags have also gone missing, while furniture was also removed which all has to be replaced at a cost to the club.
“I’ve confronted a few youths regarding but they just laugh and walk off, they have no respect for the club or its members.
“We’ve had continuing problems with petty vandalism for months and are to meet with the police this week to discuss ways in which they and us can stop further vandalism.”
Police appeal to parents
Inspector Kirk Donnelly from Glenrothes Police Station said: “It is disappointing to hear of this mindless act of vandalism that has caused considerable damage to the Balbirnie Golf Course.
“There is a minority in our community who feel this sort of behaviour is acceptable, but I want to be clear, that it is not.
“I am aware of a number of reports from members of the public recently of young people gathering in this area, who are abusing alcohol, littering and becoming involved in antisocial behaviour.
“Officers are working with Fife Council and the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service to ensure the area is patrolled regularly, but I would also urge the parents and guardians of young people to encourage them against gathering in groups and remind them that anti-social behaviour of any kind will not be tolerated.
“We are following lines of enquiry into this incident of vandalism and I am appealing to anyone who may have been in the area at the time and saw anything to contact the police.”