A NATIONWIDE search has been launched for a life-sized toy soldier which went AWOL with thieves who smuggled it on to a train.
The 6ft tall figure was last seen on a Liverpool-bound service after thieves walked through the town with it on their shoulders.
The statue is one of a pair which famously stand sentry outside The Officers’ Club, in Barracks Square, Wigan. A man and a woman are suspected of the theft at around 6.20pm on Saturday.
Owner Peter Hughes today appealed for help in tracking it down.
He said: “I don’t know how they got away with it. They must have walked down Wallgate with it without anyone questioning them. They then went into North Western station and got on a train to Liverpool with it.
“I suppose it is their idea of a joke but these were £200 apiece and they are part of our identity. People have their pictures taken with them. It could be anywhere now.”
Town centre CCTV is being checked for sightings. A Wigan Police spokeswoman confirmed that the theft had been reported to them and it had involved a man and a woman.
She appealed for anyone with information to ring 0161 872 5050.