HCS hopes vandalised Greenhead Park bandstand can be repaired in time for summer concerts

The Grade II listed bandstand in Greenhead Park has been attacked by vandals and Huddersfield Civic Society has asked Kirklees Council if it can be repaired before the summer concert season begins.

The bandstand has been attacked twice and both community group the Friends of Greenhead Park and Huddersfield Civic Society have asked Kirklees Council to repair it as a matter of urgency.

HCS secretary Geoff Hughes emailed Kirklees Council’s Head of Corporate Landlord, David Martin, who said: “Following discussions with colleagues regarding the listed status of the bandstand, repairs will be made like for like. The repairs are currently out to tender and I would expect contractors to be on site within the next two weeks.

“We will work with our colleagues in Safer Communities and the Park Service to monitor the bandstand and its state of repair. Should further damage occur we may need to work with Conservation to look at a more robust solution.”

Geoff had said: “The bandstand is in a prominent position in the park and is seen by large numbers of visitors.

“While appreciating Kirklees Council’s current financial constraints, we ask that the damage be speedily repaired. With school holidays imminent and many summer events to be held in the park in the coming weeks, it’s imperative that action is taken quickly, both to deter further vandalism and to prevent continuing deterioration that will be more expensive to repair.”

The damage is round the side of the bandstand so can’t be seen from the front, with two large decorative wooden lattice panels kicked away. The bandstand will be able to still stage the concerts with the damage, but won’t look quite the same.

Friends of Greenhead Park secretary Jane Griffiths said: “Sadly, the bandstand was first vandalised in October last year but repairs were not carried out despite our best efforts. It was then further and more seriously vandalised three weeks ago. The bandstand is an important feature of the park and we feel it is very vulnerable to further damage if action is not taken soon.”

The Friends of Greenhead Park are also concerned that bins will be left overflowing at weekends.

Jane added: “Another current issue is the recent withdrawal of weekend staffing in the park. For several years we have had a gardener working in the park at weekends who, alongside his gardening duties, provided a valued presence in the park, emptied the rubbish bins and kept the park litter-free.

“The last three weekends have shown the impact of this decision with litter bins jammed to overflowing and rubbish collecting round them. We have passed photographic evidence to the council but are told nothing can be done.

“This weekend has been just as bad with no staff on Bank Holiday Monday and a funfair in the park adding to the usual high footfall.”

A Kirklees spokesperson said the bins will not be emptied on weekends or bank holidays, adding: “The bins at Greenhead Park will continue to be emptied and prioritised on Mondays with the exception of bank holidays when they will be emptied on the Tuesday. We remain committed to keeping our parks clean and a space for people to enjoy.”

The free concerts lined up in the bandstand are: Sunday, June 23, Honley Silver Band; Saturday, June 29, Musica Kirklees Medley; Sunday, July 14, Nightflyers Dance Band; Sunday, July 21, Valley Beats Samba Band; Sunday, July 28, Sundown Swing.

The concerts start at 2pm and finish around 4pm although the Musica concert on June 29 begins at 1pm.

People are welcome to bring their own chairs and rugs. There will be a collection at each concert for the Friends of Greenhead Park.