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17 September 2007
Vandals target Rollright Stones again

Conservationists are considering using CCTV to protect the Rollright Stones (Oxordshire, England) following the latest vandal attack. Police said a symbol, which is believed to be a pagan swastika, was drawn in black marker pen on the information notice boards on the hut. A sign was knocked off a railing fence and a tyre was placed around a stone and set alight. On the other side of the road, the 1930s monument plaque near to the King Stone has been forced with a blunt instrument causing it to shatter. They also stole 7 from a cash box at the hut.
     PC David Sutcliffe, based at Witney Police Station, said: "These incidents are being investigated together and I hope that if someone has seen any suspicious activity in the area recently they will contact us." George Lambrick, chairman of the Rollright Trust charity, said: "We are considering installing some kind of CCTV system here to deter further attacks. There are 59 different species of lichen that grow on the stones and we will be trying to find out if the fire has damaged them."
     The circle of 70 stones, said to be one of the most important in the country and believed to be 3,500 years old, was seriously damaged in April 2004, when vandals splattered them with yellow paint. The attack caused an estimated 50,000 damage.
     Claire Gourlay, a spokesman for Thames Valley Police, said: "We are investigating this attack and an officer has visited the site to assess the potential benefit of scenes-of-crime officers attending to gather forensic evidence." Call police on 08458 505505 if you have any information.

Source: The Oxford Times (10 September 2007)

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