Heartless thieves have crushed the dreams of children at a Moray nursery by chopping up a tree trunk that was to be the centrepiece of an outdoor classroom.
Children at the Rainbow childcare centre in Forres had laid claim to the giant tree that was toppled during the recent storms – and had already been given permission from Moray Council to put it to good use.
Earlier this week the manager of the centre, Denise Gibbon, met council staff and showed them which parts of the tree the childcare centre wished to use for an outdoor classroom project.
However, just 24 hours later someone had stolen the entire tree trunk.
Ms Gibbon said: “The children were disappointed – workmen cut off all the branches but there were a few big pieces left overnight, then some opportunist came along with a chainsaw.
“The guy from the council who told us said that they would find us a tree trunk from somewhere else. We will get a tree and we will have happy children – but we need to shame whoever took it.”
The nursery is attended by the child of local SNP councillor Aaron McLean, who said: “It is ridiculous that somebody would do that overnight when it was well publicised that the tree was going to the nursery for the kids to play on.”