CHILDREN are being blamed for causing damage to the ruins of a 14th-century building after they were seen climbing on the walls.

Becky Millman was in the grounds of the grade II* listed Blackfriars Priory in Hereford and asked the two children to get down for their own safety.

Ms Millman, from Redhill, also said the fire service have been called on a previous occasion when children, whose faces we have obscured, have become stuck.

She said: "They were warned to get down, for their own sake and for the building, but they just laughed at us. The nearby, elderly residents feel too intimidated to say much more than get down before they get hurt.

"It is costing hundreds of pounds in damage each year and the kids don't pay for any damage they cause, often the council have to instead.

"They are up on the first floor level which to get up on they have to climb up on the walls of the priory and you can see loose stones and gravel where they have been climbing.

"I was with a few of the residents of the Coningsby almshouses and a few volunteers who tend to the roses and the kids were shouting at us, nothing bad.

"When we then ignored them they would just shout out to try get attention."

The Dominicans, or so-called Black Friars, founded the priory c1276. The existing ruins are the refectory and the Priors House, built c1322.

The substantial priory in Widemarsh Street stood strong until the Dissolution of the Monasteries, but one important remainder is the preaching cross in what was the friars' cemetery. It is the only surviving example of a friars' preaching cross in England.

Historic England has been approached for comment.