Thieves have stolen a parent-child swing from a Kaitaia playground.
The large, metal-framed swing — the only one of its kind in the Far North — was stolen sometime last week.
Large bolt cutters would have been needed to cut through the heavy-gauge chain that connected the swing seat to its support.
The parent-child swing, which allows an adult to swing in tandem with a toddler, was installed in March this year as part of the council's playground redevelopment at Jaycee Park, also known as Centennial Park. The replacement cost is likely to be more than $3000.
Te Hiku Community Board chairwoman Adele Gardner said she was ''hugely disappointed'' the playground, on South Rd near Te Ahu, had been targeted by thieves.
"This is a very popular destination for local families. The upgrade of the junior play equipment, which was completed only months ago, was undertaken following many requests from residents for equipment for younger tamariki. This theft will directly impact those young children and their caregivers just when the park will be at its busiest."
Kaitaia police are reviewing CCTV footage of the park in a bid to identify the culprits.
Gardner urged anyone with information about the theft, or the whereabouts of the swing seat, to call the council on 0800 920 029 or Kaitaia police on (09) 408 6500.