POLICE in Richmond have praised a group of schoolchildren who helped bring a pair of vandals to justice.

More than £80,000 worth of damage was caused to the new gym facility and youth club at Richmond Middle School in June 2009 after a vandalism spree.

The offenders were a 17-year-old from Richmond and a 16-year-old from Ripon.

In a statement, officers said that while society is often too quick to write off young people, the way the majority responded to the vandalism at the school showed that it was only a small minority who caused the negative image.

PC Richard Jamieson, of the Richmond Safer Neighbourhood Team, said: "I would like to thank all of the young people from Richmond Middle School who assisted me in this investigation and who bravely put themselves forward and helped to identify the youths responsible.

"Crimes of this magnitude are extremely rare in Richmond, but even more reassuring is that, in the main, the young people of Richmond take responsibility for their community and the facilities provided for them.

"When called upon they showed that they were willing to step forward and do the right thing as individuals and for their school."