A popular Napier tree has been saved from a vandalism attack, which may help identify those responsible for ongoing attacks on trees across the city.
The london plane was thought to have been planted on a triangle bounded by Georges Dr, Chambers St and Nuffield Ave more than 50 years ago.
The damage was discovered this week, and was close to the heart of Napier City Council social media manager Peter Malcouronne who has two children at the Montessori 3-6 early childhood centre on the same busy triangle.
The tree is popular with the youngsters.
His job has included publicising other tree vandalism on council websites in the hope of putting an end to the serial attacks and, if possible, helping identify s offenders.
He said the vandal or vandals in the latest attack may have been interrupted and "scarpered".
Montessori 3-6 tri-lingual centre founder Vicky Lumsden said she was pleased city council staff had arrived quickly to repair the damaged tree which, although not on the grounds, also shades children's play areas.
Malcouronne said it is the perfect "climbing tree" for children, and he regularly has to factor-in 10 minutes or so for play time when he picks up his children.
The vandalism happened within a kilometre of two attacks in November last year when trees were cut down during the night on the Chambers St Reserve, opposite Napier Boys' High School, and on the Te Awa Ave frontage of the school. Other attacks in Napier in the past year have included a banksia in a reserve off Westminster Ave, Tamatea in July, and several young trees beside Pandora Rd.
Patsy Glasspool, who has had more than 40 years of protecting and tending trees and other plants in her job with the city council is distressed by attacks on the trees, of which there seem to be several every year.
The most distressing was that of a century-old moreton bay fig several years ago off Ormond Rd, Hospital Hill.
Anyone with informatiom about suspicious behaviour that could be linked to the tree vandalism should contact the police.