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Gang of youths set fire to hotel’s German flag
POLICE are investigating after a German flag was torn down and set on fire close to Malton’s war memorial.
The incident, outside the German-themed bar at the Mount Hotel in Yorkersgate, was captured on CCTV.
Owners Dagmar and Gunter Schwark said they were extremely distressed by the attack.
“We have lovely customers and we have been made so welcome in Malton – this incident is so upsetting,” said Mrs Schwark.
Two weeks ago a previous flag put up by the couple was also removed.
“We thought the first time it was probably done as a joke but that was certainly not the case last Saturday,” said Mr Schwark.
“We have never had any trouble in our bar, only nice, friendly people.”
The flag was removed in pouring rain last Saturday night by youths who were seen running away from the pole after one had kept a look-out. One was seen on the CCTV footage waving the blazing flag.
The Schwarks are now planning to fly the blue and white Bavarian flag from southern Germany.
Insp Andy Everitt, of Malton Police, said he had visited the couple to reassure them that this sort of behaviour was unacceptable.
He said: “I can confirm that CCTV from the Mount Hotel has been seized and statements have been obtained from witnesses.
“Local officers are also checking the town centre CCTV for further evidence. I anticipate that a number of arrests will be made very shortly.
“I am aware of some community feeling towards the flying of the German flag very close to the war memorial.
“However, this in no way justifies this sort of behaviour as it becomes personal with some potentially disturbing undertones.
“My view is that this is another example of mindless and unacceptable drink-related behaviour within the night-time economy in Malton which I am keen to eradicate.”