VANDALS have caused thousands of pounds worth of damage to newly-installed information boards at a beauty spot.
A number of the boards have been daubed with pink graffiti at Blackhall Rocks picnic area.
The signs form a package of improvements costing £25,000 which was only completed two weeks ago and it will cost £6,000 to clean up the mess.
Bosses at Durham County Council’s Countryside Service, which owns and manages the site, have expressed their disappointment at the vandalism.
Police are investigating the incident and it is hoped that the graffiti “tag” will be able to identify the offender.
Coralie Niven, from the county council, said: “Blackhall Rocks picnic area is owned and managed by Durham County Council’s Countryside Service.
“It is a lovely area known for its unique habitats, wildlife, spectacular views and being part of Durham’s Heritage Coast.
“We have been working together with the Heritage Lottery funded Limestone Landscape Partnership to deliver improvements to the areas footpaths, interpretation and car parking and fencing.
“This section of work has cost £25,000. It is will cost in the region of £6,000 to remove as much graffiti as possible and where necessary panels will be replaced.
“As you can imagine, this is very disappointing as the work was only completed two weeks ago.
“As tags such as these tend to be unique to an individual or group we would appreciate any help in trying to catch the offenders.”
Anyone with information about the damage, between midday on Sunday and 9am on Monday should call Peterlee Police on 101 quoting DHM-09112014-0232.