Gnome-gate: The beloved gnomes that were stolen and smashed in an alleyway
A dozen garden gnomes were stolen and smashed to pieces in a bizarre incident in Cheltenham during race week.
Bernard and Cath Bond were upset when they woke up to discover that a dozen of their cherished gnomes and ornaments had been stolen from their front garden in Unwin Road, The Reddings, overnight last Thursday.
And the retired couple were reeling from the shock when a neighbour came to tell them that the gnomes and ornaments had been found smashed to pieces in a nearby alleyway.
Among the broken characters was a gnome which had belonged to Bernard's late brother Trevor, who died in 2007.
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Only its head was still intact, left lying among the shattered pieces of its former fellow garden dwellers.
"It looks like someone has taken them from the front garden and taken them down between some garages near the brook and smashed the lot," 67-year-old Bernard said.
Grandfather Bernard, a retired bus driver, said other neighbours had had garden ornaments stolen in the past couple of days, and he believes there could be someone with a grudge against gnomes targeting them in the area.
"How people can do something like this, I don't know. It's absolutely disgusting," he said.
"The oldest gnome was about 15 years old."