Thief who stole Atherstone’s Christmas Nutcracker figures returns them…

A thief who stole a town’s Christmas Nutcracker figures has returned them with a observe apologising for any upset and distress caused.

Atherstone has been placing the cardboard soldiers around the town for the last two years in memory of the late Cllr Dawn Downes.

But in the first year 30 out of the 90 festive figures were stolen, while others have been vandalised.

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To the community’s amazement some have now been returned, with one bearing a observe reading: “I am so sorry for my actions. I am really ashamed of myself. I am also sorry for any upset or distress I have caused.”

Gary Chamberlain, local businessman and chairman of The Atherstone Partnership, explained: “As many will be aware, two years ago our town featured the Nutcrackers, throughout the town, for for the first time.

What they look like.

“This was something that the late Cllr Dawn Downes asked for and we were able to provide. It really did cheer the town up.

“Originally we had 90 of these and we expected to have some broken or lost. At the end of the first year we were left with around 60.

“They went up again last year while we were in lockdown, for an extended time, just to bring a bit more of a festive spirit to a very difficult year. We were then left with just 19 out of the original 90.

Nutrackers were taken in Atherstone.

“In memory of Dawn I promised that we would carry this on as she loved to see these Nutcrackers down Long Street. We purchased an additional 30 just to get the numbers back up.

“I put these up early on Tuesday morning and just two days later I noticed that not only had 10 of these gone missing but quite clearly they had been ripped off!

BrumWish 2021 aims to get thousands of Christmas gifts to young children in need across our city – the homeless, the unprotected, kids in care and kids who have little.

This year’s allurement is bigger and better than ever – because we have teamed up with our partners at #Toys4Birmingham, including Thrive Together Birmingham, the Birmingham Playcare Network, the Edgbaston Foundation and Birmingham Forward Steps.

Also involved are Birmingham Community Healthcare NHS Trust, Barnardo’s, Spurgeon’s children’s charity, the Springfield project in Sparkhill, St Paul’s Community Development Trust and Your Local Pantry, which runs food hubs in 12 locations across Birmingham and the Black Country.

You can buy a gift from the #Brumwish Amazon Wishlist here.

Or you can collect and drop off donations of new and nearly new toys and gifts to special donation days at Edgbaston Stadium, B5 7QU, on Saturday November 27, Friday December 3 and Saturday December 4, from 11am to 3pm, where volunteers will be waiting to see you.

Brand new or nearly new, unwrapped gifts, books and toys for all ages will be accepted.

You can also donate cash, which will go into a fund held by a charity partner to use to plug gaps or buy specialist toys for children with additional needs. This is the link to make a donation.

“Some have been returned and the person responsible has replaced them and left a observe. I’d like to thank that person for having the courage to return them and realising their mistake. It takes a lot to do this so thank you.

“It cannot justify why they were taken in the first place but I appreciate you bringing them back and re-attaching them in their rightful place.”

He additional: “Although some of the ones that were returned are damaged, we have 48 of the original 50 put out. It looks like the culprit returned all they took and the other missing ones are on a different street so probably not related.”

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