Vandals repeatedly target Linslade’s Community Garden and damage beautiful Jubilee rose

Callous vandals keep targeting Linslade's much-loved Community Garden and damaged a beautiful rose bought to celebrate the Queen's Platinum Jubilee.

By Jo Robinson
Monday, 27th June 2022, 4:40 pm
Updated Tuesday, 28th June 2022, 12:06 pm

Volunteers for the Friends of Leighton-Linslade in Bloom have been left "dismayed and devastated" after a number of projects were desecrated in the past few weeks.

The group is urging the police to take action and curb the spate of vandalism that the town has seen, fearing the garden could be blighted once again.

Rosie Palmer, Chair of the Friends of Leighton-Linslade in Bloom Gardening Group, said: "A few weeks ago the wire supporting a rose and a clematis on the arch by the the path to the station was totally destroyed by vandals.

Vandalism at Linslade Community Garden. Photo: Friends of Leighton-Linslade in Bloom Gardening Group.

We decided to put a trellis at both sides of the arch, paid for by the volunteer group the Friends of Leighton Linslade in Bloom.

"Last week we arrived to find the bench in the same area graffitied, but the Town Council has since cleaned it."

On June 21, the volunteers arrived to find graffiti at the back of the noticeboard, and one side of the trellis totally destroyed.

Vandals had also "significantly damaged" the new Elizabeth rose, which the group we bought and planted to celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee.

Vandalism at Linslade Community Garden. Photo: Friends of Leighton-Linslade in Bloom Gardening Group.

Rosie said: "The broken stems were stuck in the ground, so it appeared they were OK, but the main stem was badly damaged. We hope it will recover but an expensive well established new rose is now just a squashed pile of leaves. The vandals had left plenty of debris and the marker pen used to add the new graffiti."

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She added: "The volunteers were devastated and disbelieving that anyone would destroy their work in a garden loved by the local residents. It will be a pity that we will have to explain to the Anglia in Bloom Judges on the 19th July why that area looks damaged compared to the rest of what is a stunning garden.

"This seems to be just some of the many mindless acts of vandalism in the town at the moment. We hope the police may be able to do something about it but it doesn’t help when it is so difficult to report this type of vandalism to them."

Vandalism at Linslade Community Garden. Photo: Friends of Leighton-Linslade in Bloom Gardening Group.

Chief Inspector Craig Gurr, from Bedfordshire Police’s community policing team, said: “We know how frustrating mindless acts of vandalism can be, especially when they involve community landmarks.

“Our dedicated community policing team for Leighton Buzzard is carrying out enquiries into these incidents to establish those responsible.

“Any witnesses or anyone with any information which can help our investigation is asked to contact us through our website or on 101.”