Langley City has had to replace Christmas lights in the downtown more than once this holiday season due to vandalism. Geoff Mallory, the City’s manager of parks, said the lights in front of the Douglas Recreation Centre and in the area of Glover Road have been targetted. (Heather Colpitts/Black Press)

VIDEO: Small B.C. city staff work to thwart Christmas light vandals

Langley City has seen its Christmas lights cut multiple times in the downtown core in recent weeks.

Langley City is asking citizens to watch out for the vandals cutting Christmas lights to ribbons in the downtown.

The Christmas lights outside at Douglas Recreation Centre as well as those on Glover Road in the area of 204th Street have been cut repeatedly in the past three weeks.

“Each and every year we expect a certain amount of vandalism. It’s unfortunately a sign of the times,” said Geoff Mallory, the City’s manager of parks. “But this year it’s increasingly getting worse and worse. The other night, unfortunately, the entire display was cut into little ribbons.”

This isn’t about wire theft or stealing decorations. The lights are cut multiple times and just left.

“It’s just destructive vandalism for no reason,” he said.

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The City, which cover four square miles and is home to about 25,000 people, takes pride in its holiday lights.

“We have anyway between four and six staff working for four to six weeks setting up the displays,” Mallory explained.

Most people seem to appreciate the municipality’s’s effort.

“People like the looks that we do,” he said. “[We get] Really good positive feedback.”

Most of the City’s lights and Christmas items are in the downtown core.

“We’ve been going around this week plugging them in, making sure it’s all ready for the Santa parade on Saturday [Dec. 1],” he said.

That left staff scrambling when the lights were again vandalized this week, just a couple of days before the community’s biggest Christmas event.

“Unfortunately it takes away the displays for the citizens and costs the citizens, taxpayers, money,” he said. “Unfortunately our electrician has been replacing plugs in the same tree three to four times.”

So the City is asking people to report anything they see.

“It’s their tax dollars,” Mallory said. “I mean this costs us thousands and thousands of dollars where we could be spending money either enhancing other areas or doing things in our parks. We’re having to spend that money making repairs to destructive vandalism.”

 

Langley City has had to replace Christmas lights in the downtown more than once this holiday season due to vandalism. Geoff Mallory, the City’s manager of parks, said the lights in front of the Douglas Recreation Centre and in the area of Glover Road have been targetted. (Heather Colpitts/Black Press)

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