PART of a popular play area has been trashed by vandals - prompting a mother to highlight the dangers and appeal for people to be vigilant.

Thugs have torn fencing panels out of the facility on the Laureates housing development, Cockermouth.

Sarah Ford, who lives nearby and has an 11 month old son, said: "I was shocked to find the fencing panels on the beck side and road side of the children's play area have been vandalised.

"The safety of our children is paramount and having an open gap onto the beck side, which leads to a steep overgrown bank to a stream, and the roadside is simply dangerous.

"If a parent looks in the opposite direction for one second their child could fall down the bank. Older kids play there unattended, I would hate there to be an accident."

The park has a set of swings, climbing frame and slide. "Every day I walk past during the holidays there is someone there," said Sarah, who works for Sally's Cottages in Keswick.

She is calling for people to be vigilant and has reported the issue to the management team.

"If I see anyone vandalising the park, I will be reporting them to the necessary authorities and I do hope everyone else living adjacent and on the estate will do the same," she said. "I for one will be very saddened to find our maintenance bill has gone up because someone thinks its funny to pull apart a children's park."