Horrific messages in English and German were discovered on the Rhyl War Memorial, in North Wales, on Tuesday night. A spokesperson from the Royal British Legion said some of the graffiti refers to the Holocaust and murdering Jews. Next to the names of fallen soldiers is written: ‘Choke on chlorine Tommy’ – appearing to be a reference to British soldiers being gassed.
Veteran Mark Sid Thompson, who lives in Rhyl, condemned the messages, adding: ‘I can’t possibly use the words I would like to describe the scum who did this.’ The town’s Poppy Appeal organiser for the Royal British Legion, Richard Kendrick, said: ‘I can’t understand who would do such an awful thing. Sad day when someone would do such an awful act. ‘These stones are dedicated to the men and women from Rhyl who have given their lives for us over the past 125 years.’ He also told the BBC he believes the graffiti was ‘carefully planned’ by an adult because it did not look like ‘mindless vandalism’ by a child.
A councillor for the seaside community, Brian Jones, called the defacement ‘horrendous’. ‘It is a total disrespect to the people that fought for the freedom of the country,’ he said. The War Memorials Trust has warned local authorities that these attacks are often followed by ‘copy-cat’ cases. A statement said: ‘Attacks such as this disrespect those commemorated, their families, friends and descendants as well as causing offense to the community.