They fled the scene after it was clear the situation had got beyond their control, sparking a police investigation into their whereabouts.

Parishioners at Our Lady Queen of Martyrs Catholic Church, in Croxteth, Liverpool, were shocked to discover that the attack had been taken out by such young children.

One said: 'It was heartbreaking to see the damage. To find out that the instigator is a six-year-old is awful. We can only hope that he gets help.'

....A spokesman said: 'It is being dealt with by restorative justice. A programme has been put in place in which they will be talking to a priest and parishioners about the effect of their actions.'

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