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St Paul's Cray Hill Country Park destruction blamed on travellers' wakes
TRAVELLERS commemorating the lives of loved ones in a country park have been accused of leaving a trail of damage in their wake.
Around £1.1m of European Commission money was spent on developing St Paul’s Cray Hill Country Park three years ago, including landscaping the site and laying pathways.
But 72-year-old Peter Robinson, who was on the working party which helped decide the park's design, says this work has been destroyed by a series of wakes held by travellers on the land.
He estimates at least 14 trees were chopped down to burn for the wakes and there are also scorched patches of land in the park.
Mr Robinson, of St Justin Close, St Paul’s Cray, said: "They have done lots of damage up there. They have cut down mature trees and burned things up there.
"It has been going on for a couple of weeks."
The Cray Valley East safer neighbourhood panel member added: "We reported it to the police in Bromley and a police car turned up and interviewed two or three chaps.
"The information was they were having a wake and it was given the ok by Bromley Council.
"But the information from the council was they were going to prosecute the travellers for criminal damage."
Bromley Council portfolio holder for the environment Councillor Colin Smith said: "The recent felling of trees in the park was a desperate criminal offence which the council will press the police to prosecute if anyone is prepared to provide evidence and identify those responsible.
"We would be happy to hear from local residents who care about this park so that they can join the Friends of Cray Valley parks group and work alongside us to help manage their local green spaces."