THIEVES have stolen Christmas lights equipment in Totton for the second year in a row.
Volunteers from the town’s Christmas lights committee were checking the fixtures on the town’s main roundabout on Saturday morning ahead of the switch-on when they discovered electrical cables had been stolen.
Totton and Eling town councillor Neville Penman, who is also a member of the lights committee, wrote on Facebook: “Someone has cut the wires on the boards and stolen leads from the stars.
“We do have CCTV on the roundabout so I am going to see if New Forest District Council can help but, we now have to go out and buy more cables, lights and fittings.”
He added: “This year has been hard to raise money but it is the hard work that volunteers put in and the help we get that makes all of it worthwhile for the residents – and especially this year, with the virus, we are trying to brighten everyone’s Christmas and this happens, just like last year.
“It is so disheartening, before we even finish putting everything up.”
As reported in the A&T, last November thieves took two large, star-shaped motifs which had been left at the base of a lamppost in Commercial Road ahead of volunteers installing them later that morning.
Residents have been outraged at the latest theft, with one commenting online: “Somebody is being like the Grinch. I hope whoever has been stealing gets caught and punished.”
Another added: “99.9% of the people of Totton really appreciate all of your hard work trying to spread a bit of joy to everyone in what has been a depressing year. It’s such a shame that the odd few spoil it for everyone else.”
A fundraiser set up earlier this year to pay for the upkeep of the lights and a new artificial Christmas tree for the town has so far raised £810.
To donate visit www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/xmas-lights