A STONE carving which was part of an art installation positioned close to the banks of a County Durham waterfall has been stolen.

The mayfly carving, which was mortared within in a stone wall along the Pennine Way, near Low Force, in Teesdale, was taken sometime between September 8 and 10.

It was part of the North Pennines Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) Partnership’s Cold-blooded and Spineless project – a five-year scheme that concentrates on the area’s invertebrates.

The sculpture trail was developed with schoolchildren and portrays the life stages of river flies that are characteristic of the Tees.

Sam Tranter of the AONB Partnership, said: “We’d like to appeal to the perpetrators to ask that they return the stone, the removal of which leaves a gap in the trail as well as a very sad note to what is otherwise a wonderful celebration of community science and art.”

Sergeant Simon Rogers, of Barnard Castle Police, said anyone with information should call 101 or call 01833-528801.