Paint thrown over statue of Greek poet in Letchworth park

Paint was thrown over the statue of the Greek poet Sappho on Wednesday night.

Paint was thrown over the statue of the Greek poet Sappho on Wednesday night. - Credit: Archant

A statue of a Greek poet in the heart of a Letchworth park has been vandalised after paint was thrown over it in what has been described as a ‘malicious attack’.

Black paint was hurled over the bronze statue and limestone plinth of Sappho in Howard Park Gardens on Wednesday night, on the same evening that paint was poured over the Broadway Cinema foyer.

The police are linking the incidents – as well as paint being thrown in Gernon Road and stones thrown through the windows of St Paul’s Church and St Mary’s Church in Hitchin – and a 38-year-old man from Letchworth was arrested yesterday afternoon.

North Herts District Council is now liaising with a stonemason specialist to have the paint removed without causing damage to the artwork, but taxpayers will be left to pick up a ‘substantial bill’ to repair the damage.

Councillor Peter Burt, who is the executive member for waste recycling and the environment at the district council, said: “There is no logic or reason behind this malicious attack. It saddens me that one person’s senseless act of vandalism can cause such a large amount of damage.

You may also want to watch:

“It is possible that someone may have seen the incident taking place and we would encourage witnesses to come forward with information by phoning the police non-emergency number on 101.”

The original Sappho statue was stolen in 1998 and a new version was given pride of place in the gardens as part of the £2.7m park renovation by the district council in 2011, after an award of £1.84m from the Heritage Lottery Fund.

Most Read

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter