Thieves target historic gardens south of Horsham
Thieves have targeted historic gardens - described as ‘the finest in England’ - on the edge of Horsham.
Police say that the thieves forced their way into a gated compound at the Grade 1 listed Leonardslee Lakes and Gardens at Lower Beeding before escaping with a haul of trucks and gardening equipment.
The 240-acre gardens - home to a rare colony of wallabies - were first planted in 1801 and are famed for their spring displays of rhododendrons, azaleas, camellias, magnolias and bluebells.
Businesswoman Penny Streeter bought the gardens in 2017 and set about renovating them after years of neglect before re-opening them to the public.
Sussex Police say that the gardens were broken into overnight between December 10 and 11. An Isuzu pick up truck, two dumper trucks, strimmers, blowers, mowers, hedge cutters, saws, chippers and climbing equipment were stolen.
A spokesman said: “The Isuzu truck was later found abandoned nearby.
“An investigation was carried out but no arrests have been made.
“Anyone with information can contact Sussex Police online at https://www.sussex.police.uk/contact/af/contact-us/ or by calling 101, quoting serial 251 of 11/12/19