Mature plane tree vandalised on South Perth foreshore

Media Release 20 June 2017

The City of South Perth has experienced an incident of wilful damage to a tree on public land. 

In this instance, a mature plane tree, estimated to be over 70 years old and 20 metres tall has been vandalised with what appears to be a chainsaw. 

Located on the South Perth foreshore, close to the Mends Street jetty and gazebo, the prominent tree was so badly damaged at its base that it presented a public safety risk. 

The City had no option other than to remove the tree, which has an estimated amenity value of $223,000.

The City has filed a report with Kensington police and requested CCTV footage from the Department of Transport and local businesses.

The City has also contacted the Department of Parks and Wildlife for assistance with the City’s own investigation. 

The incident follows the poisoning of a mature Eucalyptus tree, also in Sir James Mitchell Park on the South Perth foreshore in January 2017. In that instance the poisoned tree was replaced with four Eucalyptus trees.

"This latest act of mindless vandalism is extremely disappointing. This criminal act seems to be part of a disturbing pattern of harm to trees on South Perth foreshore," Deputy Mayor Glenn Cridland said.

"This beautiful plane tree was part of the City’s iconic gateway to Mends Street, the loss of it will be deeply felt by many members of the community including adults and children who walk and play along that part of the foreshore every day.

"The stump of the tree will be left in place as a reminder of this extreme act of vandalism. The City is committed in its efforts to fight against damage to trees and protecting South Perth's beautiful natural environment. Tree vandalism destroys the local amenity and costs ratepayers thousands of dollars each year.

"The criminal responsible is now warned - when they are caught, they will be prosecuted and the City will seek to recover the substantial costs of dealing with this damage and replacing the beautiful tree."

It is an offence under the City’s Public Places and Local Government Property Local Law (2011) and the Local Government Act (1995) for unauthorised persons to prune, remove or otherwise deal with any tree which is under the care, control or management of the City. 

There are substantial penalties for the unlawful destruction of vegetation. Vandalising the City’s trees is an offence that will be dealt with through the courts.

Records are kept of the 28,000 plus trees in the City of South Perth and the City will continue to replant and maintain trees in response to blatant vandalism. 

In some instances, where there has been a history of tree damage the City installs metal trees to highlight to residents and visitors that trees in the area have been poisoned, ring barked or cut down by persons unknown to the City.

The City has a reputation for its green leafy streets and is committed to manage the trees on land under our care and control. If you have information that may help to identify tree vandals, please contact the City on 9474 0777 or email

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