Community centre is trashed in ‘racist and antisemitic’ attack

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Community centre is trashed in ‘racist and antisemitic’ attack

Photographs of the Spring Hill Community Centre in Accrington showed the extent of the vandalism after two break-ins

Lee Harpin is the Jewish News's political editor

Extent of the damage to the community centre, including Swastika daubed on wall Image: NQ/Springhill Community Centre)
Extent of the damage to the community centre, including Swastika daubed on wall Image: NQ/Springhill Community Centre)

As community centre in Lancashire has been completely trashed with swastikas and antisemitic sketches being drawn on walls.

Photographs of the Spring Hill Community Centre in Accrington showed the extent of the vandalism, which also saws doors smashed, furniture broken, paint emptied on to the floor, and a selection of Islamic children’s books thrown to the floor.

Swastikas were painted on walls, which another openly antisemitic sketch featured an image of a man with a big nose and a Star of David.

The Lancashire Telegraph reported that police were called on two separate occasions to break-ins at the community centre which is is managed by a group of dedicated volunteers who raise funds to help to keep it going.

Police had earlier arrested two people over a break in at the weekend, but a second break-in on the Monday led to the whole centre being trashed.

Shamim Miah, who helps to run the centre alongside his wife said the incidents had left people scared.

“We are speechless. It is so distressing and demoralising,” he said.

“The racist graffiti is upsetting. We have Muslim children who attend the nursery.

“There is so much anger and hate that has gone into this.”

Lancashire Police said they were called at around 3.15pm on May 8 to a report of burglary at Spring Hill Community Centre.

Two 17-year-old boys were arrested on suspicion of aggravated burglary. Both have since been released on bail.

Regarding the earlier incident on Saturday (May 8) police said they were called at around 8.40pm on Saturday (May 6) to a report of a burglary at same location.

Officers found a significant amount of damage had been caused to the centre and anti-Semitic graffiti had been drawn on the walls.

Following enquiries, on Sunday police arrested a 16-year-old boy, a 14-year-old boy and a 15-year-old girl on suspicion of burglary.

Tell MAMA UK tweeted:” We strongly condemn the vile racist vandalism of the Springhill Community Centre in Accrington.

“Vandals daubed Nazi swastikas and racist anti-Jewish cartoons on the walls, smashed windows.

“Tell MAMA is liaising with Lancashire Police further.”

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