CAREFULLY kitted out in rugby boots and a Northampton Saints shirt, Sporty the scarecrow was set to be outstanding in his field at the annual Wolverton Scarecrow Festival.
But, before the perfectly constructed prop had a chance to shine, crooks stepped in – and hijacked him from his front garden.
Furious Gerry Hynes, who spent hours making the scarecrow with his three-year-old granddaughter Erin, scoured the streets of Wolverton to search for him.
The top half was found hours later – wedged into a post box in the town’s Square.
The bottom half was found dumped in a flower bed and the wig was found stuffed in a nearby letter box .
Thieves had stolen the rugby boots, ripped the shirt and damaged the shorts, said Gerry.
“I would like you to print this story in your paper so as to shame the idiots who took the scarecrow away and spoiled a day for a little girl,” he said.
Festival organiser Denise Ilett told the Citizen: “It is a real shame this happened.
“This was the ninth annual scarecrow festival and it was otherwise a very successful event.
“We will see the little girl gets a prize and write her a thank you letter for taking part.
“We hope the family won’t be put off from entering again.”
> Scarecrow Festival picture spread, see page 28&29.