Reward after vandals ruin floral display at Kingsnorth Gardens in Folkestone
A reward has been offered after vandals ripped out thousands of plants in a Folkestone park.
Devastated groundsmen discovered the damage at the town's Kingsnorth Gardens when they arrived for work.
Those who deliberately uprooted the plants "need their heads banging together", according to Shepway council’s leader.
Thousands of flowers were left strewn around Kingsnorth Gardens
Cllr David Monk said: "A lot of people love these gardens and have been saddened by the news of such wanton vandalism. The culprits need their heads banging together."
Shepway council leader Cllr David Monk
Now, a week on from the attack, Crimestoppers has offered a £500 reward for information that leads to an arrest and charge.
There were 4,938 plants in the affected beds and about two-thirds were pulled out. The rest were trampled on.
Laura Pinkham, Shepway council’s parks manager, said gardeners replanted them as quickly as possible - but there was no guarantee the plants would survive.
She said: “Even if they do, the flowerbeds will not look the same. This was done in the height of the summer, when all our beds are looking their best. Our gardeners, who take such pride in Kingsnorth Gardens, are devastated.
“We bought the plants for £1,471 and it took four men five hours to replant at a cost to the council of £400.”
Shepway council is offering some restorative justice – if the perpetrators hand themselves in, they will work for the remainder of the school holidays with the council’s grounds maintenance team.
The damage, which was discovered last Thursday morning, has been reported to the police.
Charles Bramhall, Ian May, Chris Shone, Laura Pinkham and Andrew Friend next to one of the repaired flower beds
Anyone with information should call the police on 101 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555111, quoting reference XY/24026.
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