YOUNGSTERS in Knottingley are “delighted” after a slide stolen from a community playground was found by police.
The 15m steel slide – which had been in the Old Quarry Adventure Playground for more than 30 years – was returned to playground staff in six pieces.
Holly Ellis, the centre’s operations manager, said: “The children are delighted the slide has been found. It was returned in a number of pieces but we’re going to try to get it welded back together.
“The fact we have managed to get it back shows the true spirit of the community and the excellent work of our neighbourhood policing team.”
Staff at the Sycamore Avenue community playground – which is a registered charity – reported the slide stolen on January 16.
Sgt Dan Tillet and PC Daniel Copley from Pontefract and Knottingley neighbourhood policing team (NPT) recovered half the slide from a shed on Knottingley’s Warwick estate and the other half from Wagstaff Scrap Metals in Great Heck.
Sgt Tillet said: “This a great example of the community, the police and scrap metal dealers working together to tackle metal theft.
“The thieves have acted solely for a small financial gain and without thought for the children of Knottingley.
“This shows that when partners work together they can be effective and this is the aim of the new police initiative, Metal Watch.”
Pontefract and Knottingley NPT has arrested three males in connection with the theft, who have been released on bail pending further inquiries.
Holly Ellis added: “The children are still prepared to raise some money for a new slide if we are unable to mend the old one.
“If anyone would like to donate money if we do need to buy a new slide, then the children would be extremely grateful.”
To contact the community centre call 01977 670953.