Village signs vandalised to remove French twinning town references on Brexit night

PUBLISHED: 14:20 04 February 2020 | UPDATED: 14:29 04 February 2020

The Harbury sign defaced - posted on Facebook - and the original version on Google Maps. Photograph: TNE.

The Harbury sign defaced - posted on Facebook - and the original version on Google Maps. Photograph: TNE.

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Signs belonging to the village of Harbury in Warwickshire were vandalised on Brexit night to remove references to a French town it twins with.

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Villagers woke up on Saturday morning to find that the two signs on Hillside and Bush Heath Road had been covered in white paint to remove the name of the French town Samois-sur-Seine and the nation's Tricolor flag.

Disappointed residents of the village turned to Facebook to express their anger at the mindless act.

Sharon Harcock wrote on the Harbury News Facebook group: "I am ashamed of the village I have lived in for 50 years. Twinning with Samois-sur-Seine over the last 20 plus years has been a joy with many friendships established and happy times learning about each other's culture. This will continue despite the behaviour of bigots."

Richard Marshall-Hardy, another member of the group, added: "It is appalling.

"Notwithstanding which way I voted in the referendum, this kind of behaviour continues to be divisive, it upsets people and it is unnecessary."

Parish Council chairman, Tim Lockley, said that members of the twinning group had been out to clean the signs over the weekend and managed to remove most of the paint.

He told the BBC: "There was anger because it makes Harbury look like a village where these kind of views are popular or common, which is not true at all.

"I can't see any other conclusion other than it was Brexit-related, otherwise the word Harbury would have been damaged as well, but it was only the bit related to the twinning.

"It is disappointing because I don't think it reflects the attitudes of people here, regardless of what they think of Brexit."

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