Church Smeared with Eggs, Glue and Dog Excrement

Country: United Kingdom

Date of incident: April 3, 2024

Rivertown Church in Shotton was subject to vandalism. Eggs were thrown at the rear door. Previously, glue and dog excrement were smeared on the same door. Furthermore, the church has seen damage to both locks and seats inside. In light of the church’s effort in running a community hub, the incident appears very distressing to volunteers and the church community.

According to media, Rivertown Church elder, Chris Bryne, said about the damage: "It's all been happening over the last couple of weeks. They have been super gluing the locks on the doors and the key safe box. As result we've had to replace two of locks on the back door. We also need to replace the front door lock which no longer opens after being glued. This has cost about £1,000, and because of the issues we've installed CCTV at the front and back of the church - again to the cost of thousands of pounds. We've also had super glue daubed over the windows, and chairs inside slashed with a blade - as well as eggs smeared on the door and dog muck."

Rivertown church hosts several charities such as Citizens Advice, a refugee support group, Warm Wales and free lunch groups. Therefore, the smearing appears to be an extra hard hit. Mr Byrne said: "We get around 100 people through the door in the week using these services, including about 25 who come for the free lunches. We also run free coffee mornings. These are vital for people suffering from the effects of the cost of living crisis, loneliness, homelessness and addiction. If these recent issues persist, and escalate, they are going to severely impact on these services. If we keep having to fork out to replace damaged items, we will have to raise the hire cost of the room. It's so upsetting as all we're trying to do is open our doors to the community. We're all fearful of what could come next."

While investigations are ongoing, the North Wales Police added: "This has been very distressing to the volunteers and their attendees. Rivertown Church is an essential and an important hub in the heart of Shotton. It offers a safe space and offers important services and activities for many members of the community and welcomes people of all ages and backgrounds.”