Residents have been left “devastated” in Breightmet after a number of soldier silhouettes were stolen following Remembrance Sunday.

The display on Bury Road had been created and put in place by volunteers in the area.

Ward councillor Adele Warren says that residents had been in touch and said the display was there up until around 3pm, until someone said just at 8.20pm, that the display did not look right, and items were missing.

The items are believed to have been taken yesterday, Sunday.

Cllr Warren said: “I went to visit and saw that out of 11, that eight silhouettes had been taken, and some red wooden poppies had been taken.

The Bolton News: The remaining three silhouettes, which have now been taken downThe remaining three silhouettes, which have now been taken down (Image: Cllr Adele Warren)“It’s the time that it takes because you have to paint, and varnish and set them.

“It’s disappointing and so upsetting that someone has taken the silhouettes and the red poppies.”

Cllr Warren says that there was a point where she thought the display might not go ahead due to not having enough volunteers, but following an overwhelming response, they were able to.

She added: “Residents turned up and helped us put them all out.

“It’s a real community feel.

“We raised over £500 for the Royal British Legion, so to have somebody just take them is really disgusting.”

The Bolton News: Some of the Remembrance display that was remainingSome of the Remembrance display that was remaining (Image: Cllr Adele Warren)Cllr Warren added: “I filled an online form in, and they called me quite quickly, but it is difficult without dashcam or CCTV.

“They are looking into that to see if there is any CCTV.”

Cllr Warren said that she has been out since to remove the remaining three silhouettes and remaining poppies in the ground.

She added: “It is just poles remaining and it looked even more disrespectful.

“The whole point is remembering fathers, brothers, uncles, and friends, and anyone lost in conflict.”

Following the incident, Sergeant Zach Keneally from Bolton’s Neighbourhood Team, said: “If anyone has any information around the location of these missing soldiers and poppies, please do reach out as we are keen to see them returned.

“The community comes out in their numbers every year to honour those who have lost their lives in conflicts, and it is fantastic to see these soldiers and poppies on the central reservation as a mark of respect to the servicemen and women who have fought for our country.

“Anyone with information should contact police on 101 or 0161 856 5761, quoting log number 3265 of 12/11/2023 or crime reference number CRI/06KK/0034005/23.

“Alternatively, information can be passed to the independent charity Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.”

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