Volunteers who have worked for months helping to inject a sense of green tranquillity into a Birmingham suburb have seen their work attacked by vandals.
Heartless yobs twice trashed a picturesque green area that was created at the entrance to Moseley Park by volunteers involved with the Moseley in Bloom project.
The vandals stamped on scores of beautiful flowers and threw many over fences protecting the green oasis, which is situated off the main Moseley Road, on the edge of Chantry Road.
The area was run down and derelict in the spring, before it was transformed by volunteers who are aiming to clinch another Britain in Bloom award for Moseley.
Work on the site finished early last month, but only days later, on May 27, vandals visited the site for the first time. The team’s spokeswoman Stephanie Silk said: “I really could not believe it when I saw the mindless vandalism at the park.
“They ripped up the flowers. They stamped on them. They threw them around. They threw them over the fences and into the alleyways. I just cannot understand why.
“We were still bathing in the afterglow of the achievement of putting it all there in the first place, and the appreciative comments from park users and nearby businesses, but then it was completely trashed.
“The rangers, Christine Williams and Garry Dawes replanted what they could and tried to reinstate the site as much as possible.
“Then on Thursday the vandals returned and wrecked everything again. Glenn Fraser, the garden designer, who created the scheme and had grown some of the plants himself, was sickened by the willful destruction.”
The police are understood to be making regular checks, particularly at night, and officers have told residents that if the perpetrators are caught, they will be charged with criminal damage.
The group put in much behind-the-scenes work before revamping the green area and obtained the consent and a financial contribution from the landowner.
It was cleared by staff from Lloyds TSB Autolease on May 1 as part of a volunteering day, before local garden designer Glenn Fraser worked on the area, creating a woodland feel which was intended to evoke a forgotten garden.
Summer jasmine, climbing roses and clematis Montana were used to clothe the walls, and a thorny shrubbery put in to deter intruders. The green area also included plantings of foxgloves, asters, euphorbias, geraniums, Japanese anemones and nicotiana.
Moseley in Bloom has competed in the regional Heart of England in Bloom campaign for the last three years, winning a Silver Gilt Award two years running (2006-07).
Last year’s additional success as Urban Communities category winner qualified Moseley to go forward to the national Britain in Bloom campaign along with Solihull (city), Bridgnorth (town) and Upton-upon-Severn (large village).
Volunteers had hoped that the flowers would be flourishing by the time of the regional judging on July 9 and looking fantastic for the national judging on August 5.
They are now appealing for donations of fox gloves, as the gardeners involved with the project were unable to replant this particularly delicate flower.
Anyone who can help should contact Ms Silk at firstname.lastname@example.org.