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Fake Thanet District Council Instagram account sparks row with Michelin star restaurant Stark

A prankster posing as Thanet District Council on Instagram is causing a stir by poking fun at the authority and causing rows with unknowing followers.

The @thanetdistrictcouncil account, which uses the official logo, posts a mix of authentic Thanet council information alongside tongue-in-cheek posts, littered with spelling and grammatical errors, mocking the organisation.

The fake account insists Stark is in Ramsgate. (19033980)
The fake account insists Stark is in Ramsgate. (19033980)

Just this week, the joker shared a congratulatory message to "Ramsgate's Stark" for gaining a Michelin star, sparking a deluge of responses from people pointing out the restaurant is actually in Broadstairs.

But the fake TDC poster continues the argument, even "reporting" the owner of the award-winning restaurant for abuse when he responds with the correct location for Stark.

While some get the joke, others - believing it to be the official Thanet District Council account - warn it will "reflect badly" on the local authority.

The mischief-maker also posted a picture of beach huts on Minnis Bay with a caption proclaiming excitement over the hugely controversial plan for 1,600 homes in Birchington, attracting angry responses from residents who are fighting the proposals.

More light-hearted posts refer to leader of the council Bob Bayford's seven pet chinchillas and others invite people to drop in for a coffee with chief executive Madeline Homer by "asking for Madeline at reception".

The poster pokes fun at the council on the fake Instagram page. (19034342)
The poster pokes fun at the council on the fake Instagram page. (19034342)

A picture showing climate change protestors congregating outside the council on September 20 simply states: "Busy day at the #council today, a lot of people waiting to come in."

To fool its followers, the page uses posts from the official Thanet council Instagram account, making it look more authentic.

A spokesman for Thanet District Council confirmed it is a fake account.

"It is not a legitimate account and has no affiliation to Thanet District Council at all," she said.

"Users of Instagram can follow @OfficialThanetCouncil for news and information from the council."

​Read more: All the latest news from Thanet

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