CONCERNS have been raised about anti-social behaviour at Cosmeston Lakes Country Park after a spate of vandalism of park benches at the popular beauty spot.

Two park benches have recently been vandalised, with one having to be cordoned off with red tape in a bid to protect members of the public.

‘Boy racers’ congregating in the car park on Wednesday evenings have been blamed for the vandalism.

The police are now set to increase the number of “targeted patrols” around the park over the summer period in a bid to crack down on anti-social behaviour.

The Vale Council has described the vandalism as “disturbing” and said it would be thoroughly investigated.

Llandough resident Wyn Williams, who took a picture of the vandalism when he was walking through the park, said: “I was talking to the park warden and he said there was a big problem of youngsters in hatchbacks and sporty cars congregating in the car park in large numbers and causing damage.

“It’s a place for young people to meet with no adults around and the result of this is mindless vandalism.

“When you cut public services this is the result as you get more anti-social behaviour because they have nothing else to do.”

Wyn, who regularly visits the park with his children, added visitors to the park would suffer from the vandalism.

“The people that use these benches are those having picnics and it’s a shame they’ve been wrecked,” he said.

“They are literally picking up the pieces of the damage the day after.”

Wyn, 38, added that steps should be taken to combat vandalism and anti-social behaviour.

“If there was more patrolling officers it would help improve the situation,” he said.

Rob Thomas, Director of Development Services, said that the Vale Council was looking into the matter.

“It is clearly disturbing that areas such as Cosmeston which are set aside, protected and managed for quiet enjoyment are subject to vandalism and disturbance and these matters will be thoroughly investigated.”

A spokeswoman from South Wales Police said: “The police team in Barry have increased targeted patrols in the Cosmeston Lakes Country Park over the past four weeks and these targeted patrols will remain over the period of the summer holidays.”