Vandals destroy newly planted trees
Published on: 30 Jun 2015
FRUIT trees planted by volunteers in Downend have been destroyed by vandals.
Four of the nine crab apple trees on Cleeve Hill were snapped off on a Saturday night and cannot be replaced until the autumn.
Parish councillor Chris Boulton, chairman of the Friends of Downend and Bromley Heath in Bloom, said members and residents were very disappointed about the damage.
“We planted the trees in conjunction with South Gloucestershire Council,” he said. “ Four of them were broken or snapped off – they were completely ruined. Everyone in our group is terribly upset and residents are annoyed.”
One Downend householder wrote on Facebook: “The parish council has gone to a lot of trouble to enhance our neighbourhood and some mindless morons have ruined it.”
The parish council supported Downend and Bromley Heath in Bloom with initial funding to buy flowers and plants. Banks, other business and individuals have sponsored displays. More fundraising is needed to ensure the future of the project.
The initiative started last year and included planting hundreds of spring bulbs and creating a garden outside the public toilets in the village centre.
This year, many more planters have been installed in the High Street and other parts of the district. These are now filled with colourful summer blooms. All the work is done by volunteers, who meet regularly at St Augustine’s Church Hall.
Mr Boulton said: “We are a band of volunteers who are trying to brighten up the area. This vandalism is a setback; it is very disappointing. We have had a couple of other incidents too, of plants being stolen, but all in all people have really appreciated what we are doing.”
Anyone who would like to join the Friends and support Downend and Bromley Heath in Bloom either by getting involved in the growing or fundraising activities or by donating money, can find out more about the group on its website downendandbromleyheathinbloom.com
The Friends will also have a stall at Heathfest on July 11, where plants will be on sale.