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Security Increase Planned At Tane Mahuta

The Department of Conservation is planning to improve security at Tane Mahuta following a recent attack of vandalism on the bridge that provides access to this popular West Coast tourist spot.

Kerikeri Area Manager John Beachman said DOC was considering a number of options including the installation of security cameras at this site.

"We have taken this matter very seriously because repairing the structure came with a considerable cost to the department," Mr Beachman said.

Vandals removed the bridge almost three weeks ago, dumping it down a bank on the northern part of the Waipoua Forest where it was later found.

DOC staff and contractors worked hard to get the structure back in place in time for the start of the school holidays at a cost of more than $6000. Mr Beachman said this money would have been far better put into the planned upgrade of the toilet system across the highway from the "big tree."

People claiming responsibility for the attack said in a media statement that their action was in protest at the state of the toilets at Waipoua.

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