Roundabout Sword Stolen!

Police in Wareham are trying to find out who stole a replica Viking Sword and then vandalised the roundabout where it forms part of a stone sculpture.

They're appealing for witnesses and anyone with information to come forward after the criminal damage.

The incident, in which unknown offenders caused damage to the roundabout at the top of North Street, happened sometime during the night from Saturday, 24 September 2011 to Sunday, 25 September 2011.

Police Constable Moira Connolly, of Wareham police, said:

"The amount of debris on the road was extensive.

"It appears offenders have flung large quantities of gravel and slate from the roundabout. The slate and gravel was scattered across the road.

"Also, the four foot high sword was cut from the stone.

"During 2011 the roundabout was the centre piece of the Wareham in Bloom competition.

"The focal point was a pile of Purbeck stone boulders with a large steel sword stuck in the top stone. The sword was a replica of one found in the river nearby during an archaeological dig.

"Many local companies and community representatives were involved in a project to completely makeover the roundabout and it was sponsored by local businesses."

The sword is about four feet high and in the style of a Viking broadsword. It was specially made for the site and is very identifiable. It was concreted and bolted in.

PC Connolly added:

 "This was a malicious act, targeted toward a community project in a town very proud to have reached the finals of the national in Bloom competition. It was committed on the very day the results were due.

"As the local Safer Neighbourhood officer I am disgusted and very upset for all the people who supported this community project.

"I am appealing for anyone who witnessed this offence, and anyone who has information about those responsible, to contact me urgently."

Witnesses and anyone with information should call Dorset Police in confidence on 101 quoting incident number 25:196. Alternatively, call the free and anonymous Crimestoppers line on 0800 555 111 where mobile phone tariffs may apply.