‘I hope and pray the thieves see the error of their ways’

The memorial in Kingston Cemetary to those killed in the war time bombing of Portsmouth which has had the plaques with names on stolen

The memorial in Kingston Cemetary to those killed in the war time bombing of Portsmouth which has had the plaques with names on stolen

Daniel Bates

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A MAN has spoken of his anger after a memorial plaque bearing his brother’s name was stolen.

Police are still hunting for scrap metal thieves who stripped plaques from Kingston Cemetery, in Kingston Road, Portsmouth.

The memorial for civilians who lost their lives in bombing raids during the Second World War remains bare without the names.

Among them was Peter Futcher, who died aged 12 during the attack.

His brother Brian, 67, who owns Squirrels antiques store, in Kingston Road, said: ‘My brother was a Scout leader and they had been having a meeting in the Church of the Holy Spirit, Portsmouth.

‘Suddenly they heard the air raid siren and so they all ran to a shelter.

‘But once inside the Scout leaders thought a boy had been left behind.

‘When he and another leader went to have a look, the church took a direct hit. The whole roof came in and that was it.

‘I was too young to remember myself, but it was tragic. When my mum heard her hair went from black to grey.’

Mr Futcher has condemned the thieves and hopes they will have a change of heart and return them.

He added: ‘I hope the thieves find the error of their ways and I pray for their souls that they see sense.’

As reported, Portsmouth City Council, which owns the cemetery, has informed police and put a warning out to scrap metal dealers.

The local authority hopes to have the plaques replaced by Remembrance Day.

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