Wildlife Trust left counting the cost of vandalism at flagship Idle Valley Nature Reserve | News | Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust
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Wildlife Trust left counting the cost of vandalism at flagship Idle Valley Nature Reserve

Tuesday 23rd January

Wildlife Trust left counting the cost of vandalism at flagship Idle Valley Nature Reserve

Staff and volunteers at Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust have been left angry and frustrated following two incidents of vandalism where 22 specially planted cricket bat willows have been snapped off.

The trees, a special variety grown specifically to produce timber for cricket bats, were planted as a landscape feature along the drive to our farm facilities at the Idle Valley Nature Reserve off North Road, Retford and it was hoped that the trees would also act as a long term investment for the charity which has previously sold timber to make high quality cricket bats.

40 cricket bat willows were planted thanks to the support of PPHE Hotel Group, which operates the Park Plaza Hotel and the OAKS restaurant in Nottingham, as part of their Responsible Business Action Month programme last year. The company also contributed towards planting of native trees elsewhere on the nature reserve and staff assisting with tree planting as part of our habitat restoration programme on site.

Speaking about the incidents, the latest of which took place last week, Head of Communications Erin McDaid said: “We were very excited to plant the cricket bat willows last April and this was only possible thanks to our partnership with Park Plaza Hotels & Resorts and Oaks Restaurant. Their support enabled us to create a great new landscape feature and an opportunity to generate income from the sale of timber in the future. The vandalism we’ve seen in recent weeks means that around £400 worth of trees have been ruined and with the time and effort taken in planting them and specialist pruning we estimate that the cost of the damage is at least £1000. We’re determined to replant the trees at some stage but it would probably have to wait until next year now meaning we’ll have lost 2 years of growth and may now lose the opportunity of future income running into thousands of pounds.”

Whilst we don’t yet know if we will be able to replace the trees, anyone wishing to make a general donation towards our work at Idle Valley Nature Reserve can do so online at our Just Giving page or by texting NWTR01 £10 to 70070.

The vandalism has been reported to the police and anyone with any information about who might be responsible should call 111 or Crimestoppers.

The crime number for the incident is 18000029234

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