Harrogate golf course tree poison riddle - reward for information

Pictured from left are Club Secretary Ruth Skaife-Clarke, Head Groundkeeper Paul Mitchell and Councillor Janet Law with poisoned trees at Harrogate Golf Club.  (130109M2c)
Pictured from left are Club Secretary Ruth Skaife-Clarke, Head Groundkeeper Paul Mitchell and Councillor Janet Law with poisoned trees at Harrogate Golf Club. (130109M2c)
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Harrogate Golf Club is offering a £1,000 cash reward for information which leads to the successful arrest and prosecution of those responsible for poisoning 35 poplar trees on the 11th hole.

The Harrogate Advertiser revealed in January how the club spent £14,000 cutting down the trees, for fear they could fall on Fairways Avenue houses.

During 2012, holes were drilled into the 30-year-old trees and poison, possibly industrial-strength weedkiller, allegedly inserted into the bark.

Now, the club is keen to get to the bottom of the mystery.

A statement read: “Harrogate Golf Club recently suffered malicious damage to 35 trees on its 11th hole.

“The trees had to be removed, costing the club a considerable amount of money, and of course the damage done to wildlife habitats cannot be measured.

“The club is now offering a single reward of £1,000 to any person(s) who come forward with information that leads to the successful arrest and prosecution of the offender(s).”

Starbeck Councillor Janet Law joined the club in condemning the alleged attack.

She and a number of club members have pledged to donate a £40-£50 sapling to help the area grow again.

One member said at the time: “We need all the trees we can get, we can’t afford to have them poisoned.”

Head Greenkeeper Paul Mitchell said: “There is plenty of evidence of it being done, but no evidence of who did it.”

Anyone with information or who wishes to donate a sapling is urged to contact the club on 01423 862999 and select option 2.

Alternatively, those with information may contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.

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Trees poisoned at Harrogate Golf Club