Santa scarecrow beheaded four times in South Yorkshire village

A Santa scarecrow has been attacked in Todwick
A Santa scarecrow has been attacked in Todwick
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A Santa scarecrow has been beheaded - four times - in a South Yorkshire village.

Yobs have carried out repeated attacks on the Father Christmas figure outside the home of John and Lesley Carr in Todwick.

How the Father Christmas originally looked

How the Father Christmas originally looked

They have taken its head off and also removed the entire torso, leaving just the legs.

There have been five attacks in all - two involving the head being removed, a further two involving the top of the body being removed and one in which the Santa was 'trashed' but left standing.

Lesley said the Santa was first used in the summer when they dressed up an old Halloween skeleton for a scarecrow trail through the village.

The couple used it as a way of raising money for charities close to their hearts.

The Santa was left headless

The Santa was left headless

They used it again on Halloween with the original skeleton and then put it out on Armistice Day dressed as a soldier with poppies around it.

“Everybody thought it was wonderful,” she said.

The couple then dressed it up as Father Christmas again and put it out on display on a bench at the front of their house on Kiveton Lane at the start of December.

But it was attacked soon after being put out.

The top of its body was also removed in a later incident

The top of its body was also removed in a later incident

“The head was completely ripped off. They broke the neck and they took the head away with them,” she said.

Lesley said there was ‘uproar’ when she posted on Facebook about what had happened and some teenagers got in contact to take responsibility and offer an apology.

Lesley said she asked for the head to be returned but this did not happen.

She said the head was replaced with a new one but that one was taken off again a few days later and left by the side of the scarecrow.

Lesley said she was told the second incident was not related to the teenagers involved in the first one. A few days later, it was attacked again with the head and body taken off.

She said: “Just the legs and feet were left.”

After it was put back up again, it was attacked again and 'trashed'.

Earlier this week, the scarecrow was attacked yet again, with the head and body taken off a further time.

Lesley said the incidents have been very upsetting.

A spokesman for South Yorkshire Police said: “Police were called to investigate two separate incidents of criminal damage and another of theft in Kiveton Lane, Todwick between December 6 and December 16.

"Enquiries are ongoing and officers are continuing to work with the complainant. Anyone with information should call 101.”

The family are raising money for Operation Oli, a campaign to collect money for an operation for John’s grandson who has cerebral palsy.

To donate, visit www.justgiving.com/campaigns/charity/just4children/operationoli.