A FUNDRAISING group has been set up to help people in Shrewton whose money was stolen from the Royal Oak Christmas thrift club.

Shrewton Parish Council has set up a PayPal account for people to donate and plans for fundraising events, including a football match, are underway.

Donations will also be collected at the village’s Christmas evening at Rollestone Manor next Friday from 6.30pm.

More than 60 families, including young children, paid money into the scheme each week and they were due to get their money back this week.

But the estimated £29,000 has disappeared and the pub landlord, Malcolm Levesconte, 59, has not been seen since Sunday.

Police have confirmed he boarded a ferry from Portsmouth to St Malo in France that evening and an international manhunt is underway to track him down.

Anyone with information about his whereabouts is asked to contact Salisbury CID on 101 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.

To donate, visit shrewton.com.