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Bookmaker apologises over tweet of blackface darts fan dressed as Diane Abbott

The post drew widespread criticism from social media users.

A bookmaker accused of racism after it posted a picture of a darts fan blacked-up as politician Diane Abbott has apologised.

The original post, by Star Sports Bookmakers on Friday evening, showed a man wearing blackface at a darts competition and holding up a sign reading “190” – lampooning the shadow home secretary for her grasp of numbers. The maximum score off three darts is 180.

The tweet was captioned: “An early contender for best fancy dress costume at the #PDC #WorldDartsChampionships tonight at #AllyPally.”

But the bookmaker apologised and deleted the picture following a flurry of criticism, led by Ms Abbott’s Labour colleague Stella Creasy.

In a post on Sunday, Star Sports Bookmakers said: “On Friday evening we tweeted a photo taken at the darts featuring a member of the audience dressed in a Diane Abbott costume.

“It was not meant to cause offense (sic) with the humorous element in our eyes being the ‘190’ scribbled on the sign.

“We have since removed the photo and would like to apologise to all those who were offended by it.”

Ms Creasy accused the firm of “promoting casual racism”, responding to a Star Sports Bookmakers comment that the image was not intended as “some guerrilla marketing stunt” but rather was “a very impressive attempt at fancy dress”.

Ms Abbott famously stumbled over the cost of plans to put thousands of extra police on the streets during a radio interview in May.

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