Society offers reward following Cobble Hill Fairgrounds vandalism

Vandals scrawled drug-related graffiti on a door at the Cobble Hill fairgrounds recently. -
Vandals scrawled drug-related graffiti on a door at the Cobble Hill fairgrounds recently.
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A reward is being offered for information leading to an arrest and conviction of an offender following vandalism at the Cobble Hill Fairgrounds.

The Shawnigan Cobble Hill Farmers Institute and Agricultural Society is putting up $250 in the hopes someone will come forward to help identify who might be responsible for acts of vandalism and graffiti at the hall.

"We don't need it here,'' said Society president George Baird of the vandalism. "We're all just volunteers here in the community.''

There is evidence of drug use, fire starting on the floors and furniture, Halloween dummy props burned in front of the cattle barn, damage to light bulbs and fixtures in both barns and damage to fair signage stored in one of the barns.

The many matches discovered are a particular concern to Baird.

"That's the start of arson and we don't need that at all,'' he said.

Shawnigan Lake RCMP are investigating the incidents and will be stepping up patrols of the area.

Society members concur it's disheartening to see a lack of respect for the longstanding community service group and its property.

The vandalism was first discovered Sunday but may have actually occurred a few days or even a week earlier.

"We don't go around the grounds that much being volunteers,'' said Baird.

About three years ago, Baird said someone broke into the hall and sprayed everything with retardant from fire extinguishers before the alarm system kicked in. The perpetrator was eventually caught and put to work doing volunteer work for the society.

Some graffiti was discovered again a few weeks ago before the rash of recent damage.

Baird said anyone with information that could help catch the person or persons responsible should contact the Shawnigan Lake RCMP at 250-743-5514.


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