COLLECTION tins for Poppyscotland were stolen from two shops in Tranent on the afternoon of Remembrance Day, police have said.

Police are appealing for witnesses after a man was believed to have snatched tins from Janet’s Flower Shop and also a pet supplies shop on High Street between 2.30pm and 3.30pm on Saturday.

A third tin has also gone missing from the Day-Today shop on Bridge Street.

That theft was discovered on Tuesday when Tranent and Elphinstone Community Council chairman David Forrest visited premises to collect the full tins, which they had distributed for the charity.

Police Scotland appealed for anyone who might have seen suspicious activities around the shops to get in touch.

The news brought an angry reaction in the town, where residents raised more than £5,000 for last year’s charity appeal with collection tins and fundraisers across the Fa’side area.

Community councillor Kevan Potter described the thefts as “disgusting”, while Councillor Gordon Mackett, ward member for Tranent, Wallyford and Macmerry, said they were “ Absolutely vile and disgusting”.

Police said they had not yet been notified of the third missing tin but were alerady investigating the two thefts from Saturday.

A spokesman said: “Police are investigating the theft of two charity collection tins at business premises in the High Street.

“The incidents happened between 2.30pm and 3pm on Sunday, November 11, and inquiries are ongoing to identify the male suspect believed to be responsible.

“Anyone with information is asked to come forward.”