Tuesday, 21 February 2012

Park statue attacked for scrap metal

METAL thieves sawed off parts of an iconic statue in Malvern Park, Solihull.


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They sawed off the tail and right front hoof (above) from the Prancing Horse in Malvern Park overnight on Thursday, police said today.

Solihull Police Commander, Chief Superintendent Sally Bourner, said: “This is one of Solihull's most treasured sculptures.

“It's a very sad day when someone attacks it for just a few pounds worth of scrap metal. The statue itself is hollow so the value of metal taken is relatively small.”

She said: "This is a mindless criminal act and one that local people who enjoy seeing the horse during walks in the park are rightly angry about.

“Officers have launched an enquiry to catch those responsible and we will also be looking at ways of tightening security at the statue site."

The bronze statue was created by Sir Joseph Edgar Boehm and was presented to Solihull Urban District Council in 1953 by Captain Oliver Bird in memory of his father, Sir Alfred E Bird Baronet.

Police are studying CCTV and have alerted scrap metal dealers.

Diana Holl-Allen, Solihull Metropolitan Borough Council cabinet member for safer communities, hit out.

She said: “This is purely a mindless act of vandalism that has damaged a valuable piece enjoyed by so many for a great number of years.

“We are now looking into the possibility of restoring the missing pieces, which of course, will cost money, the exact amount of which we do not know yet.”

Anyone with information should Solihull Police on 0345 113 5000 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.