THE latest attack of ‘deeply depressing’ vandalism has left Christchurch town leaders calling for the culprits to be found and fined for ‘destroying the town’.

Artwork displayed in the newly refurbished underpass in Christchurch, linking Waitrose and Saxon Square, has been vandalised less than two-months after being unveiled.

Wanting to take a ‘zero tolerance’ approach to vandalism, Christchurch Town Councillor, Mike Cox said: “It's deeply depressing that this has happened and it just shows that Christchurch isn’t immune to what goes on in the rest of the world.

“It won’t be tolerated and it will be cleaned off immediately. If you get caught doing it you will be fined accordingly.”

Bournemouth Echo: Vandalism at the underpass in ChristchurchVandalism at the underpass in Christchurch

The underpass was refurbished over the course of a year and unveiled at the end of November.

A joint project between BCP Council and Christchurch Chamber of Trade and Commerce the underpass was subjected to a deep clean, wall artwork wrap and new safety initiatives.

Mayor Christchurch, Councillor Sue Bungey said: “I am very sad to hear of the vandalism of the new refurbished underpass - I personally haven’t seen the vandalism.

“Many people spent a great deal of time and effort making this area somewhere for our residents and visitors to be proud of and be safe.

“The Chamber of Trade worked on this project for a long time and I hope that anyone who knows anything about this comes forward to report it to the police and Town Council.

“These people should not be allowed to get away with destroying our much loved town.”

Bournemouth Echo: Vandalism at the underpass in ChristchurchVandalism at the underpass in Christchurch

Supposed to represent our cleaner, greener and safer community, the mural was expected to bring back a sense of community pride.

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The wall wrap artwork includes a newly designed map of Christchurch town centre to encourage visitors to explore different areas of the town and increase dwell time. Below the map is a QR code to the BCP Council tourism page to highlight places of interest.

The project has one final stage remaining - with leaders considering if security mirrors can be installed so pedestrians can see who is in the underpass before they enter.