You are using an older browser version. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience.

Gun-toting Welsh nationalist councillor has a message for the English

The Telegraph logo The Telegraph 23/08/2022 Telegraph reporters
Jon Scriven, a Plaid Cymru representative on Caerphilly Council - Wales news service © Wales news service Jon Scriven, a Plaid Cymru representative on Caerphilly Council - Wales news service

A Welsh nationalist councillor is being investigated by police after posing with what looked like a gun and saying he was stopping “any English people trying to cross” the Bristol Channel.

Jon Scriven, a Plaid Cymru representative on Caerphilly Council, posted the picture on Facebook showing him holding what appeared to be a rifle at Ogmore-by-Sea in the Vale of Glamorgan.

Mr Scriven captioned the photo: “Ogmore-by-Sea tonight for a quick swim and make sure there wasn’t any English people trying to cross the channel.”

The councillor, who represents Penyrheol in Caerphilly, has since deleted the post and apologised.

South Wales Police said it was “aware of a post on social media featuring a man brandishing what looks like a rifle at Ogmore-by-Sea”.

Superintendent Michelle Conquer said: “An allegation of malicious communications has been reported to us and we are investigating the matter.”

‘Xenophobic’ towards the English

The Facebook post was made on August 8 but began to be widely shared on Monday.

It attracted criticism from politicians who called it “xenophobic” towards the English.

Andrew RT Davies, the Welsh Tory leader, said he was “speechless”, adding: “This sort of xenophobic attitude is beneath us.”

Mr Scriven represents Penyrheol in Caerphilly - Wales news service © Provided by The Telegraph Mr Scriven represents Penyrheol in Caerphilly - Wales news service

In another tweet, he claimed there are “known problems of violence and antisocial behaviour at this location”.

He called on Adam Price, the Plaid leader, not to “let another scandal rage on without decisive action”.

It is possible Mr Davies was referring to the saga involving MP Jonathan Edwards who was suspended then readmitted into the Westminster party after receiving a police caution for assaulting his wife.

Jane Dodds MP, the Welsh Liberal Democrats leader, said: “There is a clear implication of violence and xenophobia in this post.

“Whether or not it was intended as a joke or not, it is entirely inappropriate for an elected official to make such comments, when they should know better.

“With so much hate in politics the last few years we should be trying to build bridges, not stoke division further.”

‘We should be seeking to unite’

Hefin David, a Labour Caerphilly Senedd member, had earlier in the day tweeted a screenshot of the post saying: “Not appropriate surely Caerphilly Plaid?”

Later in another tweet, Mr David said: “To those who posted offensive comments in response to this. Our society is facing huge challenges.

“We should be seeking to unite and address real concerns such as the cost of living crisis.

“Wrapping yourself in a flag and hating outsiders won’t help a single person in need.”

Mr Scriven has apologised for the post - Wales news service © Provided by The Telegraph Mr Scriven has apologised for the post - Wales news service

A day after the post was circulated on social media, Mr Scriven wrote on Facebook: “I would like to apologise for any offence caused by my now deleted Facebook post.

“It was ill-judged and I have apologised to the group leader Lindsay Whittle who has accepted my apology.”

A Plaid Cymru spokesman said: “Councillor Scriven’s now deleted post was inappropriate and goes against Plaid Cymru’s views and values.

“He was right to apologise for any offence caused.

“All Plaid Cymru elected representatives have a duty to uphold the highest standards. Councillor Scriven has been suspended pending an investigation.”

Caerphilly County Borough Council has been contacted for comment.

Sign up to the Front Page newsletter for free: Your essential guide to the day's agenda from The Telegraph - direct to your inbox seven days a week.

AdChoices
AdChoices

More from The Telegraph

image beaconimage beaconimage beacon