Police confirm hate crime investigation as Hitchin’s Great Black Britons posters vandalised

PUBLISHED: 10:46 05 November 2020 | UPDATED: 12:43 10 November 2020

Police are now investigating after an exhibition celebrating Great Black Britons at Christchurch in Hitchin was vandalised. Picture: Edward Selby

Police are now investigating after an exhibition celebrating Great Black Britons at Christchurch in Hitchin was vandalised. Picture: Edward Selby

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Herts police have confirmed they are treating the vandalism of an exhibition that champions Black British history in Hitchin as a potential hate crime, as they appeal for witnesses and information.

An exhibition celebrating Great Black Britons at Christchurch in Hitchin has been vandalised. Picture: Edward SelbyAn exhibition celebrating Great Black Britons at Christchurch in Hitchin has been vandalised. Picture: Edward Selby

The Great Black Britons exhibition at Christchurch in Bedford Road was defaced between 5pm on Friday October, 23 and 10.45am on Saturday October, 24.

Pictures of iconic Black figures from across the country, including Lewis Hamilton, Nicola Adams, Sir Lenny Henry and Marcus Rashford were all targeted with black spray paint, after initially being scratched or keyed two weeks prior to that.

An exhibition celebrating Great Black Britons at Christchurch in Hitchin has been vandalised. Picture: Edward SelbyAn exhibition celebrating Great Black Britons at Christchurch in Hitchin has been vandalised. Picture: Edward Selby

READ MORE: Hitchin church’s Great Black Britons exhibition targeted by vandals

Now, Herts police are appealing for the public’s help in tracing those involved in this incident of racially-aggravated criminal damage.

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Police Constable Emma Jessup, who is investigating, said: “Not only is this senseless vandalism, with an exhibition celebrating black history that people have worked very hard on ruined, but it is also being treated as a hate crime.

“This sort of behaviour will not be tolerated in Hertfordshire, and we are conducting extensive enquiries to trace those responsible.

“If you witnessed the incident taking place, of if you have any information that you think may assist with our investigation, please get in contact as soon as possible.”

If you have any information, you can contact PC Jessup directly via email at emma.jessup@herts.pnn.police.uk.

You can also contact Herts Police via the non-emergency 101 number, speaking to an operator via web chat at herts.police.uk/contact, filling out an online report at herts.police.uk/report.

Alternatively, you can remain 100 per cent anonymous by calling the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800555111 or visiting crimestoppers-uk.org.


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