“MINDLESS” vandals have defaced a youth centre, pavilion and pensioner’s home in Christchurch in a widespread graffiti spree.

One elderly pensioner is now too frightened to go outside after the letters DLP were sprayed on her house and she believed they read OAP.

Restaurants, fences and the Barrack Road Recreation ground Pavilion have been vandalised in the attacks which have affected several areas in Christchurch.

Residents and local businesses are apparently furious about the recent vandalism while councillors have described the graffiti spate as “irresponsible and selfish”.

Cllr Bernie Davis, portfolio holder for communities at Christchurch Council, said: “Graffiti painting is an anti-social activity and can have a very negative impact on our communities.

“We are about to start a campaign to address the problem of graffiti and would ask everyone to help us get rid of this blight.”

“It is the council’s responsibility to clear graffiti off public property.

“However, in order to keep communities clean and because we understand the negative feelings that graffiti can cause, we have a small budget put aside to also clean graffiti off private property.

The council has been made aware of the prevalent graffiti and has been out to clean it. Some of the graffiti appeared at the Christchurch Christmas Festival on November 30 when the festive lights were switched on.

PC Andrew Morton, the Safer Neighbourhood Officer for Mudeford and Christchurch said: “Mindless defacing of public and private buildings costs us all money in the long run and blights peoples' lives. Please help us to stop it by contacting us in confidence.”

A police spokesperson said: “Episodes of graffiti have been reported and are now subject to an ongoing investigation.

“If anyone has any information or any idea about who is responsible then should contact 101 and ask for PC Andrew Morton.”