An elderly couple have been left heartbroken after callous thieves dug up their newly-installed garden.
Dorothy and Bernard Parr had spent around £1,000 turning the front and rear of their Scholes home into little havens.
But within hours of their handiwork being completed, an artificial lawn outside their front door had been stolen.
An appeal has been issued to track down the cruel raiders, who have left the 78-year-old and 83-year-old, who live in Windmill Close, in tears.
A veteran councillor is now investigating how security can be stepped up in the Scholes area to prevent any repeat thefts after the incident on Wednesday night into Thursday morning.
Dorothy’s daughter Carol Unsworth, who lives in Worsley Mesnes, said: “My mother and stepfather decided to have an artificial lawn fitted because they were having difficulty cutting the grass.
“When my mother called this morning she was so upset and in tears. Who could want a piece of lawn?
“I just don’t know who could do this to an elderly couple, who have paid out a lot of money, that they’ve saved a long time for, just to make their home look that little bit nicer for summer.
“If I could get my hands on whoever has done this right now then I’d probably end up killing them.
“My stepfather loves his garden, just pottering around, and they had done this to make their lives easier.
“They must have spent just over £1,000 on the front and the back. It’s a disgrace when you think about what has gone on It’s just really knocked them for six.”
Her brother, Alan Unsworth, and sister, Gail Patterson, have also been left distraught by the theft.
The couple, who both worked at Wigan Baths, are well-known in the area.
Coun George Davies, who represents Wigan Central ward, said he would be visiting the couple to see if he could offer any assistance.
He added: “This is a terrible thing to happen to anyone - every area has its problems with anti-social behaviour but I will get onto this.
“I’m sure that there is plenty that we can do to get their lawn back. Someone must have seen something nearby.”
The councillor will be contacting the council’s area housing manager, to see whether any immediate assistance can be offered to the couple. And he will also be in touch with local police community support officers to see whether an “increased presence” can be provided for the Windmill Close area.
Coun Davies added: “We had been planning to get some CCTV cameras for the area and it might also be useful to put up some signs, so people can be on the lookout for things like this.”
Police have been contacted and the family is waiting for a crime reference number.
CCTV footage is also being checked at nearby Boyswell House, to see whether any clues are offered.