COUNCIL chiefs have reassured residents that a town Christmas tree was not targeted by vandals after it appeared to have been felled.
The tree on the Headland was seen on its side sparking fears it had been attacked by yobs.
But Hartlepool Borough Council, who provides it, reassured residents and confirmed it deliberately brought it down so that it did not blow over during recent high winds.
Council workmen were due to replant the trunk by today after work was done to strengthen the base.
A spokesman for the council said: “The council deliberately laid the tree on its side last week.
“Because of the high winds we wanted to make it more secure. It has not been subjected to vandalism, it was done deliberately until we could make it more secure.
“We returned yesterday to carry out work so that it is not vulnerable to high winds.”
The tree, is located at the junction of Northgate and Durham Street to bring a little Christmas cheer to visitors and residents on the Headland.