Residents angry at vandalism of trees

Lee Gailer checks out the road reserve alongside Cedar Pocket Dam where at least 20 trees were cut down with a chainsaw on Friday night.
Lee Gailer checks out the road reserve alongside Cedar Pocket Dam where at least 20 trees were cut down with a chainsaw on Friday night. Craig Warhurst

NATIVE trees planted by locals on a road reserve near the Cedar Pocket Dam were felled with a chainsaw on Friday, between 10-11pm.

Neighbours have said they heard laughter and a chainsaw and they saw headlights moving as the vandals went from tree to tree along the road.

At least 20 trees - jacarandas, poincianas, grevilleas and callistemon - were cut down at the base.

The Cedar Pocket landowners are angered and puzzled by the inconceivable act of eco-vandalism.

The property, next to the Cedar Pocket Dam and Sorensen Bridge, has been transformed in the past five years by a couple who live nearby. The incident has accelerated their decision to sell up and leave the area.

"We don't want to live in a community that doesn't value or appreciate improvements and beautification of the environment," the resident, who wished to remain anonymous, said yesterday.

"We can't believe any normal human being would have the mentality to do this.

"It is a mindless, stupid act - the work of people without conscience or sensibility.

"They are brain dead... What must have been going through their stupid minds?"

Gympie Regional Council had been undertaking some site work in the area recently and a spokesman said the incident was "suspicious".

"Taking down trees on a road reserve is not to be done without appropriate approval," the council spokesman said yesterday.

"It looks like vandalism."

The trees have been left where they fell, some over fences.

Police are seeking information from anyone who can shed some light on the bizarre incident.

They urge anyone who may have been driving on Cedar Pocket Rd late Friday evening and saw a vehicle parked near Sorensen Bridge, or anyone acting in a suspicious manner anywhere in the area, to phone the Gympie police station on 5480 1111.

Police believe there were two or three offenders involved, and the vehicle was a large work ute or 4WD.

"Maybe people need to be asking where their family members were between 10-11pm on Friday night," the Cedar Pocket resident added.

"Years of work has been chainsawed down and the culprits need to be found, charged and dealt with."

Gympie Times


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