Police are investigating two incidents of criminal damage at the Swindon and Cricklade Railway where vintage carriages have been damaged by vandals.
Overnight into the early hours of Tuesday 13 August, three vehicles were damaged – six carriage windows were smashed on the Moonraker dining coach which is currently undergoing restoration.
A window on a carriage used for regular activities in the school holidays was also damaged, as well as a window on the recently acquired exhibition coach which had not long been refurbished.
Then overnight into Saturday 17 August, volunteers arrived at the site to find that two further railway vehicles had been attacked overnight. The Mk1 BR Brake Coach which was awaiting restoration had the majority of its windows smashed, while a specialised track maintenance vehicle was targeted and had a window broken.
PC Teresa Herbert said: “The railway is a charity and is run by a group of dedicated volunteers who give up their time not just because they have a keen interest in the railways, but to enable members of the public, both young and old, to enjoy the facilities and it is extremely disappointing to hear of these latest incidents which have threatened to disrupt some of the school holiday activities they regularly host.
“The members tell me the impact on them is considerable. They are now facing a bill for several thousands of pounds, and in operational terms, it also puts them back several months, if not years.
“I’d like to appeal to those who are responsible for these mindless acts of vandalism to think long and hard about their actions, and the impact their behaviour can have on the local community."
Anyone with information should call 101 and ask to speak to PC Teresa Herbert.