Mindless vandals have trashed a First World War memorial garden in Padiham in a sickening series of attacks.
The latest attack was discovered on Tuesday morning, the day after the town united with the rest of the country to honour war dead in the national Lights Out event, commemorating the centenary of the outbreak of the First World War.
Dozens of red hydrangeas, planted in the shape of a 10ft long poppy, had been ripped up and kicked around at the garden in Memorial Park.
It was created and designed by Mrs Gillian Pridden, a former Mayoress of Padiham. Her husband, town councillor Vince Pridden told the Express: “This is just mindless vandalism and very upsetting and disheartening considering what the garden commemorates.
“Perhaps if whoever was responsible for this act knew what the garden was for they may think twice.”
Inspired by the centenary of the First World War, Mrs Pridden felt Memorial Park was a fitting place for the garden to give visitors a chance to remember the thousands of soldiers who sacrificed their lives for their country. After fund raising to buy plants and flowers, park-keepers from Burnley Council dug out the garden and work began on creating it two months ago. Volunteers have helped with the project, only to see their efforts destroyed.
Coun. Pridden said: “A lot of people in Padiham have helped us with this garden by donating money and their time and we do not want to give up on it.”
Plans were being made to plant poppies at the garden this week along with erecting signs to identify the memorial garden.
Coun. Pridden added: “There has been damage caused to other flower beds in the park.
“This type of thing always happens at this time of year when gangs of teenagers tend to congregate in the park.”