The Miners Rest community has been left heartbroken after vandals graffitied public property and desecrated the town's war memorial.
The war memorial along with the playground, some signage, the bus shelter and 'Moo the cow' were the target of the vandals, as were fences on some nearby properties.
Committee For Miners Rest president Alicia Bond said she was alerted to the graffiti on Tuesday, after some residents voiced concern about tagging on their fences.
It was then discovered the park and cenotaph had also been tagged.
Earlier coverage: Miners Rest war memorial, playground defaced
In recent years, the community along with the Lions Club and City of Ballarat have worked hard to rehabilitate the area to create a valuable community space.
This work involved the cenotaph being moved and the Avenue of Honour being refurbished.
So to see it so senselessly targeted is very upsetting for not only those involved but also the wider community.
Ms Bond said it was "heartbreaking" to see the property vandalised.
"It is a space that is there for the community and someone has just gone and defaced it in a split second. It's absolutely horrible.
"It's like a kick in the guts for everybody involved and the people who have gone to so much effort to rehabilitate such a wonderful area for the community and it's just destroyed like this," Ms Bond said.
Ms Bond said Miners Rest was a relatively small community in which multiple generations of families lived, so it was very family-friendly.
The memorial plays a significant role in the community, with some of the families of the people honoured within it still living there.
"I don't think whoever has done it has really understood the hurt that it has caused to so many people.
"It's just disrespectful to all of the war heroes."
It is also where an Anzac Day morning service is hosted each year, with all aspects of the community attending to pay their respects.
Werner Oellering, secretary of the committee, said it was "disappointing behaviour".
He has lived in the area for many years and said that while there had been some trees vandalised in the Avenue of Honour and 'Moo' (a statue of a much-loved gentle cow who lived in the paddock for many years) has been vandalised before, it had not been to this extent.
City of Ballarat councillor Grant Tillett said it was a "terrible disgrace".
He said whoever vandalised the war memorial had "no principles".
"It's hard to imagine the mentality of the people who did it. It's very, very disappointing."
He said the desecration of the war memorial was "just beyond comprehension and to be abhorred".
While he said it could be cleaned, he said it meant workers had to spend the day doing so.
The City of Ballarat worked to remove the graffiti on Wednesday.
Ms Bond encouraged anyone whose property was damaged or who has information to report it to police, so they can investigate.
Police are looking into the damage and encourage anyone with information to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or to make a report at crimestoppers.com.au