VANDALS have ripped protection from dozens of saplings to protect a Crowle playing field just hours after they were planted.
Volunteers planted 420 hedging trees along the open boundary of the Windsor Playing Fields in Godnow Road.
But the success of their community-spirited Dig Together Day was soured when the damage was discovered just hours later.
Volunteer Ron Stewart said: “Two of the volunteers went down to see how things were going along and found 50 protective sheaths had been stripped away from the saplings.
“It appears that the mindless have struck again.
“I would be grateful if you could highlight this stupidity and hopefully shame the guilty.”
Martin Ayers, chairman of the Crowle and Ealand Garden Club said members had been able to put back most of the sleeves, which form a protective spiral around the tree and expand as it grows.
He said: “I have told Humberside Police as the fields are part of their patrol area.
“I hope they will go down their regularly to keep an eye on the saplings, which as far as I know weren’t damaged themselves.
“If they smash them down it will be a costly business.”
Isle folk donned their wellies to muck in to plant the trees, which will form a hedge and windbreak along the open boundary. The trees will grow and provide protection for the junior sports teams practising and playing on the fields from the harsh, cold winds coming off the moors.
Volunteers were encouraged to get involved in the scheme which was organised by the Crowle and Ealand Garden Club, Crowle Playing Fields Association and Crowle Colts FC. Crowle’s Dig Together Day was part of an initiative supported by the Royal Horticultural Society.