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Vandals target Raphael Park’s Percy the Park Keeper

PUBLISHED: 09:43 03 June 2015

Percy the Park Keeper.

Percy the Park Keeper.

Archant

A treasured park statue of a children’s book character has been vandalised.

Friends of Raphael and Lodge Farm Parks was “shocked” when its members discovered the statue of Percy the Park Keeper in Raphael Park had his hands broken off.

Julia Herold, member of the Friends of Raphael Park group, said: “It is such a shame that something like this had to happen.

“We’re very disappointed and upset that Percy has been ruined not just for us but for the entire community.”

Percy the Park Keeper was created by children’s author Nick Butterworth, orgiinally from Gidea Park, who based his character on Raphael Park’s warden 27 years ago.

The author unveiled the statue of the beloved character in 2013 as well as the £7,500 picnic area, paid for with lottery and government funding secured by the Friends of Raphael and Lodge Farm Parks.

Julia said: “Percy acts as the mascot of Raphael Park so it is very important to a lot of people.

“We think this might have been an accident as we found one of his hands had just been thrown onto a pathway but it is still really upsetting knowing that they didn’t have any respect for the statue.”

The conservation group is now appealing for anyone with information about the incident or the whereabouts of Percy’s missing hand.

Julia said: “If those who did break Percy’s hands don’t want to come forward, then we would really appreciate it if they could just anonymously contact us about where his other hand is.

“We just want him to look just as wonderful as he used to.

“Percy is a great asset to the park and to Romford in general and it would be horrible if we wasn’t able to properly fix him.” If you have any information email info@forflp.org.uk


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