Ap­peal as Des­mond the rein­deer goes miss­ing

The Peterborough Evening Telegraph - - UK & World Update -

pic­ture: DAVID LOWN­DES CHRIST­MAS has been marred for one vil­lage af­ter a pop­u­lar dec­o­ra­tion was stolen.

A mo­torised rein­deer has been stolen from a prom­i­nent spot in a gar­den on the cor­ner of the Old Le­ices­ter Road and Yar­well Road in Wans­ford.

The Christ­mas dec­o­ra­tion, called Des­mond, was known through­out the vil­lage and be­yond and the rea­son for its theft seems to have mys­ti­fied many peo­ple.

Owner Jane Tate (58), said: “It is quite re­mark­able how many peo­ple knew about Des­mond.

“We were at a din­ner party in Oun­dle and peo­ple there who we had never met were ask­ing af­ter him.

“I think be­cause it is such a prom­i­nent spot and he was the only piece of dec­o­ra­tion in the gar­den apart from a stock­ing in the tree, that made him so well known.

“It is rather sad that he has gone. These things be­come part of vil­lage life and now he has gone.

“He was dis­tinc­tive be­cause he was get­ting a bit old. One of his legs didn’t work prop­erly and the lights on one antler have bro­ken.”

Des­mond has been a fix­ture in Wans­ford for the last six years. Each year, reg­u­lar as clock­work, he goes out on De­cem­ber 1 and goes back in on Box­ing Day.

But last week he went miss­ing, some time be­tween about 8.30pm and 10pm on Tues­day.

Mrs Tate does not be­lieve it was an op­por­tunis­tic theft as it is thought they had in­su­lated cable cut­ters, slic­ing through a mains con­nected wire.

Mrs Tate said: “We have had a lot of peo­ple ask­ing where he has gone.

“The chil­dren would all see him in the morn­ing on their way to school and back again at the end of the day.

“We have a teddy bear dressed up as Fa­ther Christ­mas who sat in a sleigh be­hind Des­mond.

“He had a lucky es­cape be­cause it was wet and mis­er­able we brought him in.”

Parish Coun­cil­lor Richard Clarke said: “I think ev­ery­one in the vil­lage knew about Des­mond. We don’t get much crime in the vil­lage, this is very sad.”

CON­CERN: Dis­traught chil­dren Amelia (4) and Joseph Green (6) and Fred­die Lin­nell (6) worry about their stolen rein­deer. (METP-20-12-11DL023)

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