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Tree blocks entrance to All Saints Church in Whitstable following overnight attack by vandals

Churchgoers escaped injury today after a large branch fell at the entrance to the building minutes before the start of a Sunday service.

The congregation had been walking into All Saints Church in Whitstable this morning when high winds caused part of a yew tree to detach.

It is the second incident affect the religious building this weekend - after it was targeted overnight by vandals who painted unusual '3F' tags on its windows and doors.

The yew tree branch fell as people were walking into the church (7664550)
The yew tree branch fell as people were walking into the church (7664550)
Vandals targetted the church door (7664552)
Vandals targetted the church door (7664552)

But the Rev Simon Tillotson was adamant the double dose of bad luck would not affect people's worship.

He continued with the service before contacting KentOnline to share images of the damage.

Describing the graffiti marks as "distinctive", he hopes publishing the attack will prompt anyone with information to come forward.

Rev Simon Tillotson thinks the markings are distinctive and hopes someone will recognise them (7664554)
Rev Simon Tillotson thinks the markings are distinctive and hopes someone will recognise them (7664554)

Rev Tillotson said: "I am so glad that there was no wedding on this weekend.

"I have chosen to make this graffiti public as it clearly has a distinguishing mark which may be replicated elsewhere.

"We are now thinking of having CCTV installed to reassure the many people who visit our church or who have loved ones buried in our churchyard.

Graffiti was discovered on the church window (7664556)
Graffiti was discovered on the church window (7664556)

"As for the large branch from our yew tree falling down during the high winds, it happened as people were entering the church.

"We are just so grateful nobody was hurt. We had both doors under attack at the same time but inside we were not in any way put off our worship and focussing on why we are there in the first place.

"The church will soon be back to normal ready for our wedding and christening season."

The fallen branch in All Saints' churchyard (7664558)
The fallen branch in All Saints' churchyard (7664558)
High winds caused a branch to fall from a tree in the church yard (7664548)
High winds caused a branch to fall from a tree in the church yard (7664548)

Police has been approached for comment.


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