VANDALS have run amok in a park, smashing stone pillars and a Chinese lantern.They have also ridden motorcycles over the grass in Rhyddings Park, Oswaldtwistle, tearing up the turf.
Police are now targeting gangs of drunken youths who they believe to be responsible.
One horrified park user told the Observer: "I hope they all feel particularly proud, having smashed the stone Chinese lantern. It had stood in pride of place since long before they were born, surviving war, depression and weather. But it cannot apparently survive today's juvenile mentality.
"Not content with this outstanding achievement, they followed it up with the destruction of the crafted stone pillars and damage to the grass using motorcycles.
"It seems that not enough measures are being taken to combat the emptyheads who are amused by such wanton acts of stupidity. Steps must be taken to preserve what little is left of our local parks."
Sergeant Bob Eaton, of Accrington Police, said police were taking a tough line against the vandals and were stepping up their patrols of the park with a major operation this weekend.
He added: "There has been some vandalism in the park and we think this is linked to the long-running problem of a small number of individuals whose poor behaviour is usually the result of drinking .
"We have had a big input on this over recent weeks and we are stepping up our activities this weekend when we will be mounting an operation to combat the problem. This is part of our commitment made to the first Oswaldtwistle Pact Forum.
"The public regularly make it quite clear they would like to see some old-fashioned bobbying and that is what they are getting. Hopefully we can cut down on this sort of vandalism.
"PC Tracey Finn, Community Beat Manager for Oswaldtwistle, has been given the job of trying to find out who is responsible for the motorbiking and when we do find out who it is we will take legal action."
A team of special constables has been drafted in to take part in the operation, which will involve all of the area's community beat managers. They will be seizing alcohol from under-age drinkers and anyone caught causing criminal damage will be arrested.
Oswaldtwistle councillor Brian Walmsley said that he was in regular contact with local police officers. He added: "They have been doing their best over the past few weeks. They are on to it and I hope this operation will help. We also have security cameras in the park."