ANGERED residents have been shocked by the vandalism of a Christian-themed war memorial on Good Friday.

The Tilbury Juxta Clare Memorial, on Clare Road, is situated on the roadside and commemorates residents from the hamlet who died or went missing during the First World War.

The war memorial is a prominent fixture in the town, and villagers where left upset by discovering a Jesus Christ statue snapped off the memorial on Good Friday.

Resident Helen Kent-Jackson said: “It is such a shame because the memorial was vandalised a few years ago, and then lovingly restored.

“It has been maliciously broken as well, it is not a case of it being knocked over, it has been completely broken.

“The memorial has a statue of Jesus on the top, and to do this on Good Friday, it is so disrespectful.

“I have started to say it is idle hands, but it is not very nice regardless.”

The war memorial was vandalised a few years ago, and after the hard work from residents to restore the memorial, the latest stint of vandalism has been described as a kick in the teeth to residents.

Helen said: “Locals really are bemused as to why someone would do this. It is tragic in many ways.

“The memorial is very prominent in the village, and it does mean a lot to residents, so it really is a shame that someone felt the need to do this.

“This kind of incident hurts us all.”

Jim Davis, Halstead historian, admitted it was always dismaying to learn about memorials being damaged.

He said: “It is always disappointing to hear of any vandalism to memorials, but particularly war memorials.

“Especially with the First World War, as a lot of the time they are the only places the names are publicly listed.

“Memorials like this one become quite important in villages, so it can be upsetting for everyone.”