Road signs, public toilets and plants in the Ashburton District were targeted by vandals over the Christmas / New Year period, racking up about $4500 worth of damage.
Council staff and contractors have been busy repairing the damage caused by vandals over the holiday break with more rural road signs being pushed over by vehicles resulting in broken posts that will need replacing.
At least 11 road signs were damaged in the Ashburton District, three on Wakanui Road, three on Chalmers Avenue, one on Wakanui School Road, Seafield Road, Kennels Road, Lills Road and on Grey Street in the Ashburton township. The signs included directional signs, give way signs and chevrons.
Council staff were also left to clean up the mess caused by someone who drove their vehicle through the flowerbeds inside the entrance to the Ashburton Domain, on the left-hand side as you drive in.
"We patched it up the best we could but you can imagine the damaged caused by a car doing wheelies on a flowerbed," says Open Spaces Manager David Askin.
Also hit by vandals over the holiday break was the Ashburton Businesses Estate where a number of shrubs and trees were badly damaged after a vehicle was driven up and down an embankment, running over the top of them.
Mr Askin says many of the damaged plants will have to be replaced.
"There were also three quite established trees in the estate which have been broken to the point where they're having to be pulled out and replaced and that means years of growth is lost."
Public toilets didn't escape the attention of vandals. Graffiti had to be removed from the Argyle Park toilets and from the toilets by the paddling pool at the Ashburton Domain.
At this stage it is estimated the cost to repair the road signs is about $3000, the graffiti removal about $500 and the cost of replacing the shrubs and trees damaged at the Ashburton Business Estate about $1000.
Service Delivery Manager Neil McCann says as well as the direct financial cost involved a lot of staff time gets committed to addressing vandalism damage which takes staff away from doing other work.