Police have stepped up patrols at a popular Staffordshire Moorlands beauty spot after off-road vehicles churned up parts of the nature reserve.
Concerns have been raised over the damage at Marshes Hill Common in Brown Edge with reports of quad bikes and other off-road vehicles driving over parts of the land.
Now local PCSO Sara Staples has called on residents to be vigilant and report any anti-social behaviour at the reserve.
She said: “We have received reports of damage being caused to parts of Marshes Hill by off-road vehicles and quad bikes using it. The damage was made even worse due to the wet weather we have experienced recently. It is an important area in terms of the plants and animals based there.
“We will be patrolling the area and looking to identify those responsible. It is a popular beauty spot and it is extremely disappointing to see it damaged in this way.”
Marshes Hill is designated as a site of biological importance due to its important heathland animals and plants.
Councillor Mike Bowen, Cabinet Member for Communities at Staffordshire Moorlands District Council, welcomed local officers patrolling the area.
He said: “This irresponsible behaviour is causing completely avoidable, and distressing, damage to this important local nature reserve and we cannot allow this to continue. I welcome the extra patrols that our partners in the police are carrying out and, once again, I strongly urge those responsible to stop taking these totally unsuitable vehicles to the site and to show some respect both for the special character of the land and those that value it.”
Anyone with any information should message Staffordshire Police on Facebook or Twitter, or alternatively contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.