A family in St Neots who had their Christmas tree stolen from outside their house have had a brand new one delivered - all thanks to a generous donation from a local retail company.

Freepost Shopping, based in Huntingdon, contacted mother-of-two Alison Hunt after reading how thieves ripped up her decorations before making off with them in The Hunts Post.

The 37-year-old, of Chapman Way in Eynesbury, was woken on December 19 to find her metal-framed tree torn from its stand, and ran down the road in her pyjamas in search of the culprits.

"I had a feeling and I just knew," she said, adding she'd bought the tree from B&Q last year.

"They ripped it so hard the lights went round the wall and the pushchair rolled across the door."

"It just felt awful that someone had just taken it," she said.

"I've always wanted a tree on the outside and my children and I would drive round the estate see the lights and we were so excited to have some. They've taken something I've wanted for so long and a little bit of my Christmas sparkle."

After hearing about the news online, Freepost Shopping decided to get in touch with the family and, just a few days after the theft, set up a brand new tree in their front garden.

Nick Annies, marketing manager, said: "The managing director saw something on Facebook about it and then saw it had been reported on and he just got in touch and said we can replace it.

"He said it was a heartbreaking and that we could replace it free of charge."

Mrs Hunt added: "It was so lovely. I had a few messages [about the theft], but some of them were quite mean so for someone to say they 'we're a small company and know what it means to you and we're going to give you a tree' - I feel really chuffed."