A Chinese toddler with a penchant for tearing up books saw his habit take a costly leap after he got his hands on his parents’ life savings and ripped the lot to shreds.
The unnamed four-year-old tore his way through notes worth £3,000 after discovering the stash in a box under the bed.
His mother Liu Fan said: "We don't have much time for reading here and didn't really care when he ripped up the old books we had lying around, and it was easy to buy very cheap old books down the market which he happily ripped into small pieces.
“I thought if I left him alone with a book for an hour it would be no problem and we could hear the ripping sounds from the kitchen but didn't think anything of it.
"My family told me that it was not and I now realise they were right after he found all our money and ripped it up. It was all our savings."
The 28-year-old added the family had been saving for a new apartment and believed their dreams lay in pieces – before finding a bank in Shaanxi province, west China, which has agreed to match the value of the notes and replace them.
Fan added: "I realise that perhaps it wasn't very sensible, I'm just very glad that the bank staff agreed to help."