Rose and Nicole Sutton of Sydney admiring the main street gardens on their stop-over in Bourke on Monday. Rose and Nicole were travelling out west in NSW and were on their way from Broken Hill to Nyngan. PHOTO TWH
Burnt out bins in Bourke’s Central Park last week. PHOTO TWH
Vandals ripped out plants in the Bourke CBD at the weekend and bins have been set alight in Central Park over the past few weeks.
Bourke Shire Council Manager of Corporate Services, Leonie Brown said the vandals would not win.
Mrs Brown said that council was determined to track down those responsible and if necessary, refer the offenders to police.
The plants were damaged on Saturday night and the bins were apparently set alight several times over the last few weeks in Central Park.
“It’s very disappointing that this kind of behaviour continues to happen,” Mrs Brown said.
“In the main street there were between 50 and 100 plants removed on Saturday night.
“That’s disappointing because we are trying to improve the beautification in the town for everyone, and some individuals decide that it’s their right to remove and destroy the plants.
“A lot of hard work has gone into creating the main street, and there’s a lot of pride in the work that the boys have done including the contractors and the council workers.
“I am not sure how many people were involved in this act of vandalism but to do that is really disappointing.
“But we’ll just keep up the hard work and keep replacing the plants and defeat the vandals and whatever they are trying to prove.
“It’s at a cost to all the community though when we have to replace these plants. A lot of them were just thrown around and we had a staff member come and blow the debris down the street because of the dirt left lying around.
“It’s just the impression it gives, not just to the people coming into town but also to local people.
“There were a number of plants we couldn’t find but the rest were replanted, and I hope they weren’t damaged to the extent that they won’t re-grow,” Mrs Brown said.
Acting Commander of Central North Police District, Inspector Ben Dawson said that police are investigating the damage done in the main street on Saturday night and Sunday morning.
Inspector Dawson said that police had reviewed CCTV files and were working with Bourke Council to identify the culprits.
“It appears to be three males on the CCTV, pulling up the plants and leaving them lying on the road and on the footpaths.
“It’s hard to understand why this would happen, and it’s disappointing that a small number of individuals would want to damage the beautiful street improvements made by council workers over the last few months,” he said.
Meanwhile, Acting Supt Dawson said his officers are also working with Maranguka and other agencies to solve the issue of bins being regularly burnt in Central Park, motorbikes being ridden around the town, and on the levee banks, and the issue of loud music late at night.
“We will continue to address these issues for the benefit of the community and we also seek the support of the community to solve these problems.
Acting Supt Dawson said that an operation has been initiated to catch the motor bike offenders, and that residents can continue to notify police of incidents of loud music late at night and noise abatement notices can be issued.
“We are working behind the scenes to prevent this sort of anti-social behaviour,” Acting Supt Dawson said.
Anyone with information on these incidents is urged to call Bourke police or Crimestoppers on 1800 333 000 or contact Bourke Shire Council.