"Sickening and disrespectful" - these are the thoughts of the Mayor of Wolverhampton after vandals attacked the city's Cenotaph for the second time in a week.
Councillor Mike Heap was speaking after the war memorial in the grounds of St Peter's Church was targeted by hooligans who ripped lights out of the floor on Monday night - a time when thousands of people were taking part in a candlelight vigil to remember the fallen.
Speaking about the latest attack, the mayor said: "Vandalising a war memorial at any time is sickening and disrespectful, but to do so at a time when the country is commemorating the 100th anniversary of the First World War is all the more shocking.
“These are deplorable acts of vandalism and it has to stop. The Cenotaph honours the people of Wolverhampton who gave their lives fighting for our country and our freedom. I would urge anyone with any information about who is doing this to contact the police immediately.”
The act of vandalism came at a sensitive time for the nation as millions observed a candlelight vigil to mark the centenary of Britain joining the First World War.
Wolverhampton City Council has said it has held talks with West Midlands Police about how security can be increased at the Cenotaph.
A CCTV camera on the roof of the Civic Centre is monitoring the site and the possibility of installing a camera closer to the memorial is also being considered.
Last week’s graffiti is expected to require a specialist contractor to clean it as the marker pen that was used has been absorbed into the sandstone that the steps are made from.
This meant that the council’s usual method for removing graffiti, using chemicals and a jet wash, has not been able to get rid of it all.
Anyone who may have information about the vandalism is urged to contact West Midlands Police on 101.