Vandals cause $30,000 damage to Oil Springs trail



Oil Spring’s is looking at a big bill after the historic Old Mill Trail was vandalized.

Some time over the weekend the trail was trashed with damage set at more than $30,000.

According to Oil Springs’ Road Superintendent Darren Morningstar, six solar powered lamps were snapped off at the base. Similar to a street light and made of white metal, the lanterns are worth between $2,500 and $3,000 apiece.

Two memorial plaques were also destroyed, Morningstar says, adding vandals also tried to pry open the steel gate.

“They tried to get in,” Morningstar explains. “It took some effort.”

Built in 2008, the trail serves as an area to plant memorial trees to honour loved ones. Granite benches line the roadway, which is closed to motorized vehicles and off-road vehicles.

Fortunately, Morningstar notes, no trees were damaged.

Fitness enthusiasts, horse and bike riders, and dog walkers use the quiet space, framed by fields on both sides.  It connects the village to Gumbed Road, and is part of a historic trail system linking to the Oil Museum of Canada.  A feed and flour mill built in 1901 once stood near the north entrance of the trail. The structure burned down in 1931.

Morningstar says a concerned resident alerted him to the damage Sunday. “We think it happened Friday,” Morningstar says, adding he heard from local residents the trail was damage free earlier in the day Friday.

Anyone with any information about this crime is asked to call the OPP.


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