YOUNG vandals armed with knives caused destruction to a Poole nursery.

Four boys and two girls accessed the playground of First Steps Nursery in Oakdale Road on Saturday night where they stayed between 10pm and 7am on Sunday.

Some of the youths slashed the windows of the nursery’s ‘friendship hut’ and split open a bean bag before pouring the contents on the floor of the structure.

They also broke the children’s balance bikes and trikes after accessing the toy cupboard and the boys also urinated on the playground.

The incident was captured on CCTV and one of the boys could be seen trying to access the building after attempting an entry keypad.

Staff discovered the damage when they arrived for work on Monday morning.

Owner Mike Marks said: “They just spent the night destroying our business.”

“They smashed a light in the bus shelter then they came into the nursery via the back. They tried the front doors and then they went into the friendship hut and set about with knives,” he added.

He said he believed the youngsters were between the ages of 12 and 14-years-old.

Mr Marks said: “It’s chilling that these children’s parents think they are in bed at 10pm. What kind of parent is letting their children do this while walking the streets? Where are they getting these knives from?”

“This is the heart of the local community, these children could have been with us when they were younger,” he added.

Last October, burglars broke into the reception and stole £30 after ripping off the front door.

A Dorset Police spokesperson said: “We were called at 4.28pm on Monday 13 May 2019 to reports of criminal damage to the garden and toys at First Steps Day Nursey in Oakdale Road in Poole. The damage is believed to have been caused at 5.15am on Sunday 12 May 2019. An investigation is underway.”

Anyone with information should contact Dorset Police quoting 55190072002.

Earlier this month, the Echo reported that an 11-year-old boy had been arrested after a nursery was torched in a suspected arson attack in April.

The youngster has been released under investigation pending further enquiries after Sunbeams and Buddies Day Care in Poole suffered significant damage.