Thieves steal Jubilee trees

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By CarlyBaldwin | Friday, February 24, 2012, 10:47

Over 150 trees planted in Leek to mark the Queen's Diamond Jubilee have been stolen - less than 36 hours after local volunteers helped plant the saplings.

Police have now stepped up patrols in their effort to find those responsible for taking the trees from Pickwood Recreation Ground and Brough Park.

Police believe the thieves struck overnight on Monday, after 34 volunteers had helped plant the saplings, which were awarded to Leek Town Council as part of a community project.

Councillor John Fisher, who helped organise the project, told the Sentinel: "It was really good to see families out there with their children taking a real interest."

"Everyone worked really hard and it is with great sadness that within 36 hours, the saplings had all gone from Pickwood," he continued. "Fortunately they are still in tact at Brough Park. It is not vandalism, it's theft."

A police spokesman has confirmed that they believe the theft to be organised crime, and that those responsible may try to sell the trees on.

"Anyone who is offered saplings under suspicious circumstances is asked to report it immediately," he said.

Anyone with any information is urged to call the police on 101.


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