Bicester councillor calls for vigilance after tree destruction

Cllr Les Sibley with vandalised trees near Goodwood Close, Bicester.'131114M-A011
Cllr Les Sibley with vandalised trees near Goodwood Close, Bicester.'131114M-A011

A Bicester town councillor is urging residents to be vigilant after several trees were destroyed on the new Kingsmere estate following ‘mindless vandalism’.

Les Sibley, of the town’s west ward, said he had counted 19 trees, which had been damaged in the Pingle Brook park area off Whitelands Way, sometime between Saturday, October 26 and Thursday, October 31.

Offenders have caused damage to the trees by bending them, causing them to snap and as a result, the trees have died. The cost of replacing the trees will be about £16,000 and Cherwell District Council has confirmed it has asked developers Countryside Properties to replace the trees as they still own the site.

Mr Sibley said: “It’s just shocking. This is such a nice area and people take great pride in living here and it’s a shame it’s been affected by such mindless acts of wanton destruction.

“They were lovely trees. A lot of money has been spent here and it’s just soul destroying for everyone.”

Thames Valley Police is appealing for witnesses to the incidents.

PC Chris Kidd from Bicester police station said: “If there are any members of the public, especially dog walkers, who may have seen people acting suspiciously in the area, please get in touch.”

Andrew Carrington, director at Countryside Properties, said the vandalism has left them ‘extremely disappointed’ and added: “The landscaping area has been planted at an early stage within the development to provide a park area that can become an important community space for the residents at Kingsmere and also the surrounding area.

“We will look to work with the police and district council to try and prevent any further incidents occurring in the future.”