STAFF and parents at a toddler group were horrified to discover their slide had been stolen - less than a fortnight after having their play area vandalised.
The weekly group for pre-school children was launched at Rhyddings Methodist Church, Oswaldtwistle, just six months ago.
And everyone involved with the group has been left reeling by the theft of the five-foot metal slide from the play area outside the church.
The bizarre theft came less than two weeks after the Wendy House was damaged and gas bottles were dumped in the play area.
Nadine Ridehalgh, 31, who runs the group, said: "The parents and the children are very unhappy about this, as are we all. Some of the children are only little and it's such a shame."
"We have had to repair the damage at our own cost and we keep having to check the area to make sure there's no broken glass lying around. Last time all the Wendy House doors were ripped off and the windows were smashed."
A spokesman from the Chapel Street church added: "There has been a lot of vandalism around here. Kids are trashing everything because they've nothing else to do."
"We originally built the slide because we thought it would be nice for the children to play on on a sunny day. How can you explain to a five-year-old that the slide has been stolen?"
Mrs Ridehalgh added that the group was on the lookout for a new slide. Anyone who is able to help should contact her on 301606.