Park memorial vandalised in Weston-super-Mare

PUBLISHED: 12:30 08 August 2016

Grove Park

Grove Park

Archant

Pokémon Go players have been involved in more controversy in Weston-super-Mare this week, with 'disrespectful' vandals drawing graffiti inspired by the game on a prominent town landmark.

Gamers scribbled drawings of Pokémon characters on the steps at the base of World War One memorial in Grove Park.

The park has become a hotspot for Pokémon players as it is rumoured to contain some of the game’s rarest creatures, plus it hosts a PokéStop where players can collect in-game items which enhance their experience.

The mobile phone game has had a largely positive influence since its release in the past month, with town centre bosses saying the game had helped increase footfall in the town centre, but negative incidents linked to the augmented-reality phenomenon are increasing.

Malcolm Nicholson, town clerk at Weston Town Council – which plays prominent role in organising remembrance events in Grove Park – is disappointed with the incident.

He told the Mercury: “The memorial commemorates people who gave their lives for our way of life.

“It’s very sad that some people don’t have respect for that.

“I have nothing against the game, which brings fun for a lot of people, but people shouldn’t graffiti anything, let alone a war memorial.”

North Somerset Council has already removed the graffiti from the war memorial, and issued a statement to vandals.

A spokesman said: “This type of vandalism is completely unacceptable and is extremely disrespectful.

“The majority of our park users enjoy and respect their surroundings and it is a great shame that a mindless minority act in this way.

“We would urge anyone who spots any damage in our open spaces to report it as soon as possible.

“We will not tolerate this behaviour.”

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