Belfast Telegraph

Anti-Catholic sticker removed from Northern Ireland council sign

By Michael Sheils McNamee

A sectarian sticker has been removed from a council sign in Banbridge.

The sticker, with the words 'Kick a Fenian',  was posted to a sign for a recycling facility near Downshire Place, close to the Banbridge Civic Building.

It was spotted by Sinn Fein councillor Kevin Savage, who reported the image to the PSNI and the council.

Speaking to the Belfast Telegraph, Mr Savage said it was the first time he had seen a message like this in Banbridge.

"It is a very intimidating message, and if you replace fenian with any other ethnic or religious group. It would still have the same intimidating connotations. It is just a very unpleasant message," said Mr Savage.

"Banbridge is a very, very mixed town compared to neighbouring towns.

"It is very mixed and very, very good community relations. It is just very unsettling to see something like Banbridge.

"Like anywhere it’s not without issues but certainly it’s a very mixed town. It’s shocking to see something like that and it’s certainly not reflective of the community in Banbridge. "

He also said he believed the sticker to be a reference to the sectarian murder of Robert Hamill in Portadown in 1997.

Robert Hamill died after being attacked and kicked by a group of loyalists.

A spokesperson for Armagh City, Banbridge & Craigavon Borough Council confirmed the sticker was removed this morning.

The issue has also been reported locally to the PSNI.

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