Robert the Bruce statue at Bannockburn daubed with Black Lives Matter graffiti

The graffiti labeled Robert a “racist king”, and called for the statue’s removal.

The statue of King Robert the Bruce at Bannockburn has been graffitied with messages calling for the monument to be removed.

Writing sprayed onto the stone rotunda at the site near Stirling reads: “Robert was a racist, bring down the statue.”

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While graffiti on the plinth that supports the statue of King Robert says: “Racist King. BLM. Black Lives Matter.”

The statue of King Robert the Bruce at Bannockburn has been graffitied with messages calling for the monument to be removed.

The graffiti is understood to have appeared late last night, after one local dog walker said the writing was not present when he passed the monument at 11pm.

A Police Scotland spokesperson said that “enquiries are ongoing" into the vandalism at the Battle of Bannockburn heritage site.

Robert the Bruce was King of Scotland from 1306 until his death in 1329. The legendary warrior led Scotland during the First War of Scottish Independence, and defeated the English army at the battle of Bannockburn in 1314.

Stuart Maxwell, General Manager for Edinburgh & East at the National Trust for Scotland said: “We are very disappointed by the vandalism of the iconic Bruce statue at Bannockburn and the A listed rotunda.

“This comes at a time when our charity is suffering serious financial hardship and this is a cost we could do without.

“We would like to thank the local community for their support in responding so quickly to this incident. A contractor will visit the site this afternoon.”

Assistant Chief Constable Kenny MacDonald said: "I am aware that vandalism of a small number of monuments and statues has taken place in recent days.

“Such action is criminal and will be fully investigated. Police officers will be providing additional patrolling around such monuments and statues in the coming days to deter such criminality.

"We understand that people want to make their voices heard, but they must do so lawfully and peacefully.

"We would encourage everyone to continue to follow the Scottish Government's regulations and guidance to help the collective effort to protect the NHS and save lives.

"There will be an appropriate policing plan in place for the coming days and into the weekend."

The National Trust for Scotland is facing a £28 million hole in its finances this year, prompting the charity to launch a fundraising campaign to keep its sites open in future.

It comes amid an ongoing row over the treatment of statues depicting racist figures from Britain’s past.

Last week, Black Lives Matter protesters in Bristol toppled a statue of the prominent slave trader Edward Colston, which had stood in the city centre since 1985.

The incident, which saw the bronze statue tossed into the River Avon, sparked wider debate over the status of public memorials to racist historical figures across the UK.

In London, authorities in Tower Hamlets removed a statue of the Scottish plantation owner Robert Milligan from its position outside the East India Quays museum.

And in Edinburgh, a the St Andrew’s Square statue of Henry Dundas, a Tory politician who lobbied to delay the abolition of slavery, has been at the centre of debates around the city’s Black Lives Matter demonstrations.

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