Newly planted trees worth over $600 were recently vandalised outside of the Middleton Tavern.
Alexandrina Council was made aware of damage to a number of trees on Tuesday August 20, following a report by a member of the public.
The act of vandalism, which is believed to have occurred over the weekend of August 16-18, damaged a number saplings, two of which were rendered non-salvageable.
The two Gleditsia 'Shademaster' trees will be replaced by council at a cost of $306 each as soon as possible, according to a council spokesperson.
The trees had only been installed last week after Alexandrina Council, in consultation with the Middleton Town and Foreshore Association, completed Stage 1 of the Middleton Main Street tree planting program, with the planting of 32 Gleditsia trees.
The council spokesperson said a possible deterrent to stop this reoccurring, would be the installation of a metal tree guard to protect every tree.
"However this would increase the cost considerably, reducing the number of trees council is able to plant within townships," said the spokesperson.
"Vandalism of trees is [generally] not a common occurrence, council assesses sites for the likelihood of damage from pedestrians, vehicles, and other factors, and this location was not identified as an area with a high risk of damaging activities.
"Council relies on the community to support efforts to green the region and encourages members of the public with any information regarding the damage, or who witness any acts of vandalism to street trees please report to council and or SAPOL with any details."