Thief makes off with six-year-old girl's takings from her egg stall in Emsworth

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A little girl who was making pennies selling eggs from her family’s birds has said she is ‘sad’ after a callous thief pinched her honesty box.

Six-year-old Lowri Gilraine has been taking to her driveway to sell eggs from her family’s three ducks, four turkeys, and 20 chickens in Long Copse Lane, Emsworth.

Eggs have been left on a stool next to a sign made by Lowri, with an honesty collection box for people to deposit their money – £3 for a box of six mixed eggs.

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But last week the family was shocked to discover that the box had been taken.

Lowri Gilraine Picture: Chris Moorhouse (jpns 250421-51)Lowri Gilraine Picture: Chris Moorhouse (jpns 250421-51)
Lowri Gilraine Picture: Chris Moorhouse (jpns 250421-51)

Young Lowri has been left upset that someone would steal her hard-earned money and hopes that it will be returned.

Lowri, who started selling the eggs in lockdown boredom, said: "They are supposed to put money in the box – not take it away.

"If I met the person who stole the money, I would say to them – 'can you give it back?'

"I’m sad that it was taken."

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Lowri Gilraine Picture: Chris Moorhouse (jpns 250421-56)Lowri Gilraine Picture: Chris Moorhouse (jpns 250421-56)
Lowri Gilraine Picture: Chris Moorhouse (jpns 250421-56)

Mum Nerys Gilraine said: "We’ve had chickens for 10 years. The other animals have been hatched by the children in lockdown last year as a project.

"[Lowri] made the sign and she collects the eggs. She’s done it for months.

"I went out there at 8.20pm in the evening and she had left it out. When I checked again at 10.30pm it had been taken.

"She was quite surprised. It’s just really sad that at the moment there is a part of society that is so disengaged that they would think it’s okay to do this."

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Nerys has decided not to report the theft to the police, with the box usually containing no more than £10.

The family has been overwhelmed by the community’s support after posting about the incident, which happened on Wednesday, April 21, on social media.

Hundreds of people have reacted to the post, with almost a dozen offers to replace the stolen money box or support her driveway enterprise – and even one offer to build a bespoke stall for Lowri, according to Nerys.

The mum-of-three said: "I let her read some of the posts. Her face was lovely – she thought it was wonderful how considerate everyone has been.

"We’re really touched by the community response."

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Nerys said the family has been overwhelmed by the community kindness, and has asked that any further offers of help be directed at ‘those more in need’ through the Beacon Food Bank in Havant and the Southern Domestic Abuse Service.

But the set back hasn’t caused Lowri to abandon her pocket-money boosting business, as her family has sourced a new money box.

Lowri said: "I’ve already had new customers."