A COFFEE shop manager has thanked the public and praised the community spirit in Welshpool after “mindless” vandals damaged festive-decorated plant boxes outside the premises.

Coco Coffee House, in the heart of the town, was struck by vandals on Wednesday night after the shop had closed, with CCTV capturing three people pulling all the trees, flowers and Christmas lights out of the planters in the outside bays. The Broad Street business has a welcoming seating area outside the front on the main street where customers can sit and enjoy their coffee, which has been decorated beautifully for Christmas with fairy lights covering pansies placed in four planters. But a scene of chaos greeted manager Sharon Closs when she arrived for work on Thursday morning, with soil strewn all over the pavement and road.

Vandalism stings that little bit more during these difficult pandemic times, but Sharon would rather focus on the depth of community spirit in the town and says the messages of support received and customers popping in to check on her and the staff has been heart-warming.

“Thanks for all the support this morning and messages, and also to the kind samaritans who reported the vandalism, replaced the soil and trees and lights last night, and this morning,” said Sharon.

“People have been in all morning to check on us and we really appreciate it, it shows great community spirit and it’s nice to now the majority of people in town are kind and thoughtful.”

Of the scene that greeted her on Thursday, Sharon added: “It was such a mess this morning, just mindless vandalism and not necessary.

“Times are hard enough for businesses dealing with coronavirus so this was just another thing we didn’t need. There’s debris all over the street.”

A post on the Coco Facebook page last night labelled those responsible “drunken idiots” while another one posted on Thursday morning thanked everyone for their help and support and summed the response up nicely by saying “kindness prevails”.