Thieves steal hedge from Shropshire nature reserve

Image caption,
Hawthorn (Crataegus monogyna) is often planted as a hedge

A recently planted hedge has been stolen from a Shropshire nature reserve.

The young hawthorn and blackthorn hedge measures 25ft by 3ft high (7m by 90cm) and was planted by volunteers in Holly Banks, near Melverley in spring.

Rhona Davies, from the Shropshire Wildlife Trust, said it was there on Wednesday but had since disappeared.

She said it was planted in a muddy area by a stream and the thieves had left a visible path through the grass.

The Holly Banks reserve opened in 2008 and comprises 18 hectares of grasses, hedges and wetlands which are being cultivated as a potential breeding site for lapwing and curlew birds.

The young hedge had been grown from about 20 saplings and was being used to fill in the gaps of a mature hedge.

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