GRAFFITTI vandals have run amok in Bodmin and caused thousands of pounds' worth of damage to property.
Police have been inundated with complaints from businesses and residents in recent weeks.
The criminal damage has been widespread, with homes, business premises and road signs targeted by the vandals. Most of the graffiti bears the tag TWK and police are hunting whoever is responsible.
One of the premises hit is the Superdrug store in Fore Street.
Store manager Tara Attis said it was the second time this year a large amount of graffiti had been sprayed on the building.
"It happened in January and it cost us £600 to clean it off. This time there is double the amount of graffiti and the cost of repainting the wall will be a lot more,'' said the 24 year-old.
"They've written graffiti on the walls of the building and even got up on the roof to do it, it's just mindless and a real pain, because I have no budget to clean up this mess,'' she said.
"It's not only us, it seems to be everywhere in Bodmin.''
Police say areas hit include the town centre, Athelstan Park, Gilbert Road and Launceston Road.
Police community support officer Ellie Leslie said police could not recall such widespread graffiti vandalism.
"We've seen nothing like it before, and it will cost a considerable sum to people to clean it all up.
"We are probably talking about thousands of pounds of damage.''
PCSO Leslie said those responsible were also putting their lives at risk.
"They've climbed onto roofs of buildings to spray their tag up there. Bodmin has a lot of very old buildings, which were not designed for people to climb on like this, and they could seriously injure themselves or worse if they carry on,'' said the officer.
"Our enquires are continuing, but someone in Bodmin knows who is responsible for this wanton criminal damage and the police would appeal to anyone with information to get in contact with us,'' said PCSO Leslie.
Bodmin Chamber of commerce chairman Chris Wilkes said graffiti did the town no favours.
"I struggle to understand why people do this - no one can read it and it just makes the town look a dump and costs businesses an awful lot of money to clean up the mess,'' he said.
Anyone with information on those responsible should phone Bodmin police on 101, quoting crime reference BB/12/816.