A RHUDDLAN memorial commemorating First World War servicemen has been damaged in what has been dubbed as "immensely disrespectful" by the town's mayor.

Police are appealing for witnesses after the bottom half of a clear plastic 'Tommy' silhouette attached to a bench on the High Street, outside Prosperity Restaurant, was removed between Friday, January 4 and Saturday 5.

The memorial is part of the UK 'There But Not There' campaign organised by six veterans' charities, and is one of 22 in the town. Each of the memorials is dedicated to the each of the town's war dead, with 17 of the silhouettes belonging to Rhuddlan Town Council and five donated to St Mary's Church on Tan-Yr-Eglwys Road by Tony Osborne of Deeside based logistics firm Expert Group Limited.

The Mayor of Rhuddlan, Cllr Gareth Rowlands said: “This was immensely disrespectful to those individuals who lost their lives and urged anyone with information about this incident to contact North Wales Police.”

It has been confirmed by a spokesperson for Rhuddlan Town Council that the damage is being treated as an act of vandalism.

In May last year, a similar monument on Rhyl promenade which was spearheaded by Rhyl Royal British Legion (RBL) was beheaded in an act of vandalism. Rhuddlan Town Council also own one of the separate black RBL 'Tommy' plastic figures, which is installed on the Rhyl road roundabout near Rhuddlan Golf Club.

Following a story in The Journal, the vandalised Rhyl monument was replaced within 48 hours with a more durable, wooden replacement.

Rhyl RBL poppy appeal organiser Richard Kendrick said: "I was quite shocked to hear that this has happened again in our area, not even a year after what happened in Rhyl. i was hoping that after last time we had a better understanding here now.

"It just goes to show that we need to work harder as a community to make sure their is more respect for our fallen

A spokesperson for North Wales Police said: "Inquiries are ongoing after a World War 1 Tommy Silhouette was damaged in Rhuddlan.

"Anyone who may have information relating to the damage is asked to contact the Managed Response Unit on 101 or use the live webchat https://www.north-wales.police.uk/contact/live-chat-support quoting reference 19100005470."