Eastbourne Jubilee squirrel sculpture stolen in 'heartless theft'

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A wooden squirrel in Eastbourne, which was placed on a tree stump to celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, has been stolen in what has been described as a ‘'heartless theft'.

A resident said the wooden carving, called Pip, was taken from a tree stump in Pashley Road overnight on Sunday, May 29.

The carving had been placed on a tree stump, along with a plaque, as a Jubilee tribute ahead of the Pashley Road Street Party which is set to take place on Sunday, June 5.

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Pip was thought-up by Pashley Road resident Tony Ward who wrote a children’s book about a magical wooden squirrel who comes alive at night to find pine cones.

Tony Ward by the stumpTony Ward by the stump
Tony Ward by the stump

The planting of oak trees for the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee is spoken about in the book, titled ‘Pip – No ordinary squirrel’.

Mr Ward said local children will be upset that Pip has been taken.

He added, “My disappointment is that my wife will not see Pip when I bring her out of her care home to the street party.”

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The author said he had been a full-time carer who his wife – who has Alzheimer's.

Pip by the Jubilee plaquePip by the Jubilee plaque
Pip by the Jubilee plaque

Along with the disappointment of the carving being missing for the street party, Mr Ward also said Pip has ‘no real value’ to the person who took it as it cost £26.99.

He added, “However, many hours were spent stabilising the dead tree stump, installing the art works and producing the story.”

Mr Ward, who has raised money with his writing for the Alzheimer's Society and St Wilfrid's Hospice, said he appealing for Pip to be returned to the stump ahead of the Jubilee celebration on Sunday.

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He said residents can request a free copy of ‘Pip – No ordinary squirrel’ by contacting [email protected]

Pip the squirrel’s empty tree stumpPip the squirrel’s empty tree stump
Pip the squirrel’s empty tree stump

Residents have also been urged to pass on any details of Pip’s whereabouts to the same email address.

Mr Ward said whoever has Pip can return the carving of the squirrel by leaving it by the tree stump in Pashley Road.

Sussex Police has been contacted for more information about the incident but has yet to reply.