SHOCKED residents have told of their anger at discovering newly-planted trees had been ripped out of the ground by their roots.
The trees, which were planted in January on land off Bourne Way, Thornton, have since been replanted, but may not survive.
The mixture of birch, white beam, oak and hawthorn had just taken root, but those were destroyed by malicious vandals, and Wyre Council officers fear they may not bed down again.
Gary Booth, of Whimbrel Drive, Thornton, said: “It was very upsetting to see the trees strewn across the field.
“The council bothered to spend money, in difficult financial times and this is a needless waste.
“They weren’t just mindlessly vandalised, they were actually uprooted.
“A lot of walkers were upset about it and we want everyone to watch out for anyone seen destroying the trees again.”
The trees were planted as part of Lancashire County Council’s Woodlands scheme – Lancashire is one of the least wooded counties in Britain with only five per cent of its area being woodland, compared with a UK average of 12 per cent.
Other efforts to increase green areas are Wyre Council’s Urban Woodlands schemes, which has seen further trees planted on Bourne Way.
And six new woodlands are currently being created in Wyre, after a Forestry Commission grant of £41,000 grant, was set aside to allow 12,000 trees to be planted and managed over the next 10 years.
A spokesman for Wyre Borough Council said: “Although we have planted trees in this park, these particular ones were planted by Lancashire County Council.
“However, because the trees would have died straight away, our officer replanted them the same day. “To uproot trees of this size would have taken considerable effort, and we want anyone who saw this to get in touch with us.”
A spokesman for Lancashire County Council added: “The 12 trees were planted as part of our woodlands scheme, to increase wooded areas in Blackpool.
“Although Wyre Council officers kindly replanted the trees, they still might not survive as they had already begun to take root and these were destroyed.”
Anyone with information about the incident can contact Wyre Borough Council on (01253) 891000.