Hand-carved walking sticks taken in raid
A WOOD turner has been left heartbroken after thieves took his unique collection of walking sticks worth £2,500.
They stole 70 sticks, made with deer antlers, from the garden shed of Derek Harman at Poplar Road, Wittersham.
He had hand-carved them over five years after spending 20 to 25 years collecting the antlers.
Mr Harman said: “I am absolutely gutted. It’s not so much the value of the property it is the time I took carving out these sticks and the years I spent collecting the material.
“I had only temporarily kept them in the shed while I was making a rack to put them in the house.”
The raid happened between 10pm and 6.30am overnight last Thursday to Friday .
Mr Harman only has three or four sticks left, which had not been in the shed. The wooden sticks were decorated with the antlers of seven dif- ferent species of deer. The stolen ones are four to fivefeet long with hazel, holly and hornbeam shanks.
Some of the heads are carved deer antler in the form of a dog’s heads, the rest are antler sticks. They have leather or nylon thongs with toggles attached.
The sticks are sold to raise money for local charities.
Mr Harman, 68, is a retired wood machinist who worked at British Gates and Timber at Biddenden.
He is also known as a naturalist who studies wild boar.
Mr Harman has gained national media attention for filming and tracking the animals and first took an interest in them when he encountered one in the road near Tenterden 20 years ago.
South Kent Police are asking anyone with information concerning the theft to call 01622 690690 quoting reference number FY/7857/ 10 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.