Funding is sought to repair Somme mural
The artwork in the Glenvale Park area of the village, which depicts a World War One British soldier and the crest of the 36th Ulster Division, had IRA slogans painted on it sometime last week.
Mr Beggs said: “This vandalism can only be described as a hate crime carried out by bigots who saw fit to desecrate this respectful mural in memory of all who suffered during the Somme, WWI.
“Let’s make sure the mural is renewed to its original form and with this in mind, I’ve contacted the NIHE, PCSP and Mid and East Antrim Council to see if any funding is available to do this.”
In a statement issued to the Larne Times, a NIHE spokesperson said: “The mural is owned by the Housing Executive. MLA Beggs has been in contact with the local office. We have since met with the local community group to discuss next steps in the process.”
A council spokesperson confirmed it is liaising with the relevant agencies to explore options.
Condemning the incident, Larne DUP Cllr Gregg McKeen said: “Residents are up in arms following this attack. It is a memorial to those who fell at the Battle of the Somme and those who served in the 36th Ulster Division.
“The mural has been defaced and vandalised and then the people behind it have made off, all under the cover of darkness. It is very sinister. Incidents like this only crank up tensions and people are wondering what is going on. Glynn is a quiet village and this is something that no one wants.”
Meanwhile, the PSNI said on Tuesday it has no report of the incident.