Police in England are investigating after more than 600 Christmas presents for children have been stolen from a community Santa’s grotto.
The gifts were being kept in buildings at the bowling green in Eastville Park, Bristol, after Father Christmas was unable to deliver them on Sunday.
High winds cancelled the event so the wrapped presents were being stored while organisers worked out what to do.
Volunteers called Avon and Somerset Police after discovering the theft had taken place overnight on December 9.
“We’re investigating a burglary in which a large quantity of presents, as well as food and cooking implements, were stolen from a building within Eastville Park sometime between 4pm on Monday December 9 and 10am the following day,” a force spokeswoman said.
“We’d appeal for anyone who saw or heard any suspicious activity around the building between Monday evening and Tuesday morning to contact us on 101.
“We also want to hear from anyone who has information about the whereabouts of the stolen presents.”
Friends of Eastville Park had planned a wildlife winter wonderland-themed Santa’s grotto along with entertainment and crafts for its first Christmas event for children.
In a message posted on the Friends of Eastville Page Facebook group, a spokesman said the burglary has “knocked us for six”.
“I’ll take a while for us to bounce back – but we will,” they said.
“Particularly upsetting is the loss of over 600 wrapped children’s presents along with a selection of drinks, some catering equipment and a room heater.
“We are currently looking at CCTV footage from the car park area in the hope that something might come up.
“We suspect that the thieves may have left through a gate at the back of the bowling green that leads down onto Fishponds Road at the junction with Royate Hill. There must have been a vehicle involved due to the quantity of items taken.”