Vandals have destroyed a new installation in a Farnworth park.

The new structure -a chess table and chairs - was placed in Bradford Street Recreation Ground, Farnworth, alongside another in Farnworth Central Park as an innovative way to encourage more to take up the game.

The two were funded via a £5,000 'Levelling Up' grant which the council won. 

Now, the chessboard on Bradford Street has been destroyed in an attack by vandals. 

The Bolton News: What remains standingWhat remains standing (Image: Newsquest)

People spotted the mindless act yesterday morning, April 5. 

The tabletop, which had the chessboard carved into it, had been ripped off its plinth and smashed on the floor. The chairs appeared to be in okay condition. 

Ward councillor Maureen Flitcroft said: "I don't understand why people do such wanton destruction. 

"The chess table was paid for by grants, it was to promote chess as an activity, and it is such a shame. 

"Now would be a time when it could get used, with nicer weather coming in, but if it is not there anymore then it's so sad. 

"It is dispiriting, you try and improve things and stuff like this happens. But you shouldn't let the fact that such a small minority does things like this stop you from trying to improve things." 

The Bolton News: Vandalised tableVandalised table (Image: Newsquest)

One dog walker in the park today said: "A guy pointed it out to us yesterday, but it was alright the day before. 

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"It is a shame, we always try and make things nice and do our best, and vandals come around. 

"I was looking forward to using it in summer when we got a dry day!"

Another added: "What is the point in them doing that?"

The Bolton News: The table in Farnworth Central ParkThe table in Farnworth Central Park (Image: Newsquest)

One other dog walker said: "I have noticed it before and thought 'I've never seen that'. 

"But it's terrible really." 

At the time of its installation, the council’s Executive Cabinet Member for Climate Change and Environmental Services, Cllr Richard Silvester, approved the bids for the funding and said it was a great initiative to bring to Bolton.

When it was installed, The Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities said it hoped the scheme would help to increase participation in chess among primary school-age children, support elite-level competition, and increase the visibility and public presence of the game. 

The funding criteria is for parks which have previously been subject to Levelling Up improvement funding in more deprived areas and the scheme is designed to attract young people to take up chess.