A Fife church lost property worth hundreds of pounds when its base was turned into a Covid testing centre.
Fife Council removed crystal glasses, vases and plates from Overton Community Centre in Kirkcaldy, to make way for testing.
But the items belonging to the Crystal Light Spiritual Church have now gone missing.
A locked cabinet, boxes of Christmas decorations and other items, thought to be worth around £400, have also disappeared.
Church secretary Anne Sinclair said many were gifts and were irreplaceable.
She has now called for a full investigation into the incident.
And she said: “This is a disgraceful action taken by Fife Council and shows no respect at all for the private property of another.”
Council changed the locks
The church began using Overton Community Centre for their weekly meetings in August 2019.
However, unknown to members, an arrangement with a local management committee came to an end in early 2020 and the keys were returned to the council.
When lockdown hit, it was decided to use the building as a testing centre and rooms were cleared.
According to Anne, the church only found out when they went to collect their property several months later.
She said: “The council changed the locks on the external doors of the premises.
“When we were finally allowed in, we found our keys didn’t operate the locked cupboard where our property was stored.”
Some of the items eventually turned up at another community centre, mixed in with items belonging to other groups.
However, others remain missing.
Fife Council apology
Fife Council has apologised and has pledged to carry out a full search.
Shona Bellfield, community use team manager, said: “Until early 2020, Overton Community Centre was managed by local people through a management committee.
“But that arrangement came to an end and the keys were returned to us.
We’re very sorry that this has happened.”
Shona Bellfield, Fife Council.
“While we were gathering contact information on the groups who had been using the centre, the country was placed into lockdown and the centre needed to be cleared at very short notice so that it could be used as a Covid-19 testing centre.
“All items that were removed were placed in storage.
“Unfortunately, we hadn’t been able to identify who they belonged to beforehand.
“We’re very sorry that this has happened.
“We’ve been in touch with the church secretary to apologise and to ask for a full list of the items that were being stored in the centre.
“Once we have that we’ll be able to conduct a full search.
“The circumstances that led to this were very challenging, but there are lessons to be learned.
“We’ll be reviewing our processes to make sure this can’t happen again.”