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Mayor's fury as cenotaph attacked for second time.

Byline: Andy Richardson Staff Reporter andy.richardson@trinitymirror.com

SICK vandals desecrated a Midland cenotaph - as the nation remembered the fallen heroes of the First World War.

Thugs ripped out a floodlight which illuminated the memorial in Wolverhampton city centre on Monday night. It happened as the lights went out across Britain to mark the centenary of the start of the Great War.

Wolverhampton Council said the vandals appeared to have used tools to wrench the floodlight from its concrete mount, leaving a 240 volt electricity connection exposed.

It was the second attack on the area around the cenotaph in less than a week.

A clean-up was launched last Thursday after vandals used marker pen to daub graffiti on steps leading to the memorial.

City mayor Coun Mike Heap visited the cenotaph yesterday afternoon to see the vandalism for himself.

He said: "Vandalising a war memorial at any time is sickening and disrespectful.

"But to do so at a time when the country was commemorating the 100th anniversary of the First World War was all the more shocking.

"These were deplorable acts of vandalism and it has to stop.

"The cenotaph honours the people of Wolverhampton who gave their lives fighting for our country and our freedom." The council said it was in discussions with West Midlands Police about how security could be increased at the site.

It is already covered by CCTV from the roof of the city's Civic Centre.

And the possibility of installing a camera closer to the memorial was also being considered.

Last week's graffiti will need to be removed by a specialist contractor because the marker pen used absorbed into the sandstone steps.

That meant the chemicals and jet wash normally used to do the job were not able to clear it all.

The floodlight was yesterday being checked for damage and will be restored to working order.

CAPTION(S):

Mayor of Wolverhampton Coun Mike Heap at the cenotaph in the city centre

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Publication:Birmingham Mail (England)
Date:Aug 6, 2014
Words:328
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