'Killjoys' are criticised after England flag is removed from Westbury White Horse

11 July 2018, 12:16

Westbury White Horse
Picture: Twitter/Hellen Evans

By Tom Eames

It was fun while it lasted...

England fans have criticised so-called "killjoys" who removed red plastic which transformed the famous Westbury White Horse into an England flag.

The plastic is thought to have been put up by a football fan ahead of England's World Cup semi-final match against Croatia tonight (July 11).

However, English Heritage said it removed the covering to make sure the 175ft (53m) tall landmark would not get damaged.

The move has been criticised on a community Facebook page.

Maurice John Bizeray wrote: "They are doing no damage and think of the money coming to Westbury with people coming to see it. Killjoys. It is only concrete. Took you months to finally clean it."

Samantha Mitchell added that football was "sadly" not coming home in Westbury, due to the lack of a "sense of humour", saying: "What harm was it doing?".

English Heritage said in a statement that it fully supports England, and wishes them well tonight.

"It's great to see people coming up with ingenious ways to show their support, but we do need to make sure that the Westbury White Horse is not damaged in the process."

The Westbury White Horse was restored in 1778, but many believe it is much older. It is believed to have been originally carved back in 878 AD to mark King Alfred's victory at the Battle of Ethandune.