Anger as historical Gwynedd railway tunnel plagued by racist and anti-vaccine graffiti
Racist and anti-vaccine graffiti plaguing a historical railway tunnel has been condemned by council leaders.
The ‘Tynal Tywyll’, an old railway tunnel that transported slate between Bethesda and Tregarth, was reopened as part of the Lôn Las Ogwen cycle route between Bangor and Bethesda two years ago.
But since re-opening after 60 years it has suffered numerous incidents of graffiti as well as vandalism resulting in damage to the lights in the tunnel.
Councillor Dafydd Meurig, Cyngor Gwynedd Cabinet Member for the Environment, said that much of the graffiti conveys “baseless comments” about the Covid vaccine and has recently included “extreme racist references”.
“Lôn Las Ogwen is a hugely popular path and families of all ages have been pleased to travel through the old railway tunnel over the last few years,” he said.
“It’s very sad to hear about this anti-social behaviour, especially the racist element. The graffiti is mindless vandalism that can cause distress to those walking or cycling along the path, there is no place for it anywhere.
“In addition to the distress this ugly graffiti causes to residents that use the path, the costs of cleaning the graffiti and repairing damage takes up limited resources and staff time. This is time and money the Council could make better use of to maintain and improve Lôn Las Ogwen.
“It’s disappointing that the behaviour of a minority of people detracts from the enjoyment of locals and visitors from all over the world who use Lôn Las Ogwen, and is also disparaging of a minority group.
“We implore those responsible to respect public property and to think about the impact of their behaviour on the local community. If anyone has any information about this matter, they should immediately contact the Police.”
Inspector Arwel Hughes from North Wales Police said that graffiti is a crime, it is costly to remove and is not victimless.
“It can have a significant effect on those who are targeted and we always encourage people to report to us so we can investigate,” he said.
“This type of offending will not be tolerated and will be dealt with robustly, therefore I would urge people to be vigilant, report offences and call us on 999 if they see a crime in progress.”
The Tynal Tywyll gave its name to the Welsh language pop group from Tregarth.
The incident has been reported to the Police. If anyone has information about these incidents, you should contact the Police on 101 or www.northwales.police.uk quoting incident number B132336.
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