Jul 27 2011 By Joe McGuire
MINDLESS vandals have smashed monuments and sprayed racist and Nazi graffiti in the famous Necropolis graveyard.
The hooligans attacked the Victorian-era cemetery, considered one of the finest in Europe, early last week.
The damage was found by a tour guide on Tuesday morning.
Specialists from the Glasgow Community and Safety Services (GCSS) removed much of the graffiti within 24 hours at a cost of s1690.
But that cost is set to rise because some of the graffiti is on headstones that are so old the chemicals could damage them. Relatives are being tracked down so they can give permission for cleaning to go ahead.
Trevor Rooney, of the Glasgow Ghost Walk, discovered the graffiti.
He said: "The damage is absolutely disgusting, especially because it includes swastikas and Nazi symbols. It's sacrilege.
"I'd like to thank GCSS and the council for their swift response.
"They didn't mess about in removing the graffiti on newer stones and trying to contact relatives for permission to use chemicals on the older monuments."
A multi-agency meeting has been arranged in a bid to catch the thugs.
Police on cross country motorbikes and plain-clothed officers have been drafted in to patrol the Necropolis and mobile CCTV vans will also monitor the site in Castle Street to identify anyone damaging graves.
Inspector Mandy Rorrison, of Strathclyde Police, said: "This graffiti is totally abhorrent and will not be tolerated.
"We've drawn up an action plan and will do everything in our power to catch those responsible and minimise the chances of it happening again."
The Necropolis, which is the final resting place of more than 50,000, has many noted monuments and statues, including works by Glaswegian artists Charles Rennie Mackintosh and Alexander "Greek" Thomson.
Councillor James Coleman, chairman of GCSS and the Clean Glasgow campaign, said: "This kind of mindless vandalism is appalling and hugely offensive.
"I'm personally disgusted by this sickening act which not only dishonours the dead but also tarnishes the city's image. Those responsible should hang their heads in shame."