The amount it cost to repair a piece of vandalised play equipment must surely have given a few people pause for thought when they saw it this week.

A slide and rope netting at Waterfields Recreation Park had been vandalised back in May. It was an impressive piece of equipment and must have been great fun for the children who played there.

But the shipping and delivery of the replacement cost £93,174, and installing it and disposing of the damaged equipment a further £27,727.

That's £120,000 for a few minutes of stupidity that the idiots responsible probably never even thought about.

This is taxpayers' money, and while it is a drop in the ocean compared to the promised £400 million loan to revamp Watford, St Albans and Hemel Hempstead hospitals, it is a lot.

If play equipment costs that much, surely it is worth paying for CCTV and security to look after it.

There needs to be some sort of meaningful punishment for those caught doing it.

A steep fine is a tempting punishment, but the culprits are unlikely ever to be able to pay back £120,000.

Perhaps they should be made to put up play equipment and see the pleasure it brings other people. They might feel they have more of a stake in the community.

If it is vandalised again - literally burning tens of thousands of pounds in the space of a few minutes - people will be entitled to ask if it is worth it. If we cannot look after these things, do we deserve them?