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Nature reserve left to burn by vandals

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Conigre Mead vandalism

VANDALS set fire to a bench, young trees, timber and wood at Conigre Mead Nature Reserve on Tuesday 1st May.

The nature reserve, managed by Wiltshire Wildlife Trust alongside 40 other nature reserves in Wiltshire,  is free and open to the public. Conigre Mead is one of the smallest that they manage.

Wiltshire Wildlife reported on their Facebook page, “Recently, a group of vandals stole a brand new bench, newly-erected in the area, where it had been wrenched out of the ground and legs sawn off. They also stole another old bench, pieces of timber and dead wood and young trees and then set fire to them, with one tree in the area completely de-barked with litter scattered all around.”

Speaking to Melksham News, Wiltshire Wildlife said, “We are extremely disappointed and upset to have had this vandalism and arson take place at our Conigre Mead nature reserve. A lot of staff and volunteer time goes into preserving the area for the benefit of both wildlife and people, and there are cost implications for repairing the area.

“As a charity, this has a real impact on the work that we can do and will take valuable staff time away from conservation work to rectify the area. We are also very concerned by the arson; if conditions were right, then this fire could have easily spread and caused a lot more damage.”

Wiltshire Police said, “This incident has been reported to us and we are investigating the matter. We would appeal for anyone with information to call police on 101.”

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