VOLUNTEERS have been left to pick up the pieces after a Sedgley beauty spot was hit by vandals.

The Friends of Alder Coppice now have a a repair job on their hands after fencing around the Conversation Crescent in the woods was torn down.

The Crescent was built by the Friends to provide a space for people to sit, relax and enjoy the nature in the ancient Sedgley woodland.

Fencing around the benches was hand weaved by the volunteers from the Friends to create a secure and calming place, but the Friends were disappointed to find the fence had been ripped down.

The vandalism has taken place over the last two weekends, with fears more incidents could occur now schools are closed to contain the coronavirus outbreak.

Simon Biggs, chair of the Friends of Alder Coppice, said: "It looks as though some have seen what damage had been done and decided to do some more.

"It had taken people quite a lot of time and effort and everybody was proud of it, it was the first type of thing many had done."

The ancient woodland has found a new lease of life in recent years thanks to the work of the Friends of Alder Coppice group who decided that more should be done to develop and promote the use of the 25 acres of woods.

Thanks to the hard work of the team, the wood now has nature reserve status with a host of plans lined up for the community.

They group have also recently won Community Forum funding for new boards to be put at the Crescent, but installing them is on hold due to social distancing rules.

Simon added that he hoped youngsters would heed the new government rules to stay at home to stop the spread of the virus, meaning further vandalism may be stopped.

He added: "The current situation means we are operating under extraordinary conditions and boredom may well become something which is an issue for us all. I hope it maybe an opportunity for parents and their teenage children to get to know each other a little better. I also hope children are not allowed to gather together out of sheer desperation on the part of parents, at their wits end to deal with unruly and bored children."

The Friends hope to create a section in the woods specifically for young people in the future.