£75,000 Vandal Damage To Historic Sites

26 September 2016, 06:00

More than £75,000 has been spent repairing vandalism at some of Scotland's most historic landmarks.

Heart's exclusive figures show sites like Glasgow Cathedral, Holyrood Park and Stirling Castle have been targeted 102 times since 2011.

Edinburgh's Holyrood Park was the most vandalised site in the country.

The 650 acre "royal park", home to the iconic Arthur's Seat, has been targeted 44 times in the last 5 years.

Offences range from graffiti to property damage and wilful fire raising.

Historic Scotland Ranger Martin Gray, said: "It's disappointing, but at the same time not surprising.

"The area is surrounded on all sides by urban sprawl, it's accessed by hundreds of thousands of people every year at all times of the day and night.

"The damage ranges from graffiti tags to breaking padlocks and small fire raising.

"It's disappointing that people target things that are of heritage, cultural and natural importance."

In the last year alone, Historic Scotland's repair bill more than trebled from £8,180 to £30,159.

The most costly repair job was at St Bridgets Church, Dalgety Bay in Fife.

£9,300 was spent cleaning spray paint from the ruin, which dates back to the 12th century.

A spokesperson for Historic Environment Scotland, said: "Sadly acts of vandalism sometimes do happen at our properties and over the past five years alone we have invested more than £75,000 to repair damage caused by graffiti, fire and damage to property.

"It is a criminal offence to damage an ancient monument but the greatest harm is in the potential loss of a cultural asset for future generations to enjoy.

"We care for these special places on behalf of the people of Scotland and local communities are often rightly protective of their local site.

"We know that early engagement with young people can make a significant difference in preventing such damage, and communities themselves have an important role to play in being vigilant and reporting incidents promptly.