A TREE that was planted in Bitts Park to mark the coronation of King Charles III has been badly damaged - less than ten days after it was planted.

The oak tree was planted by the Lord Lieutenant, Alexander Scott, on Wednesday, January 3 and it was designed to help the people of Carlisle commemorate the coronation of King Charles in May 2023.

The King granted funds to each of the United Kingdom’s Lord-Lieutenants to plant a tree in the area they represent, to commemorate the Coronation.

The tree is thought to have damaged on the evening of Thursday, January 11. The mayor of Carlisle has called it a ‘despicable’ action.

"This tree was a gift to commemorate King Charles' III coronation,” said Cllr Abdul Harid, mayor of Carlisle.

"The Lord Lieutenant could have planted it anywhere in Cumbria, but he chose Carlisle. As Mayor, I was honoured to have it planted here in such a lovely area of the park. 

"There were 25 children who attended the ceremony who all took part in planting it. This tree would have grown for generations. And to find out this morning it's been damaged... I think it's despicable. I don't know why it's been damaged, but now we'll need a replacement.

"I'm really disappointed that this was planted just two weeks ago and now it's damaged. I can't think why someone would go and do this."

READ MORE: Cumberland Council unveils plan to improve residents' health

The tree planting ceremony was attended by local dignitaries and school children from nearby Caldew Lea Primary School.