RACIST and homophobic slurs have been found written on a historic Kilwinning landmark.

Police Scotland say they are investigating the graffiti which was found written on Kilwinning Abbey as officers made routine cycle patrols in the area yesterday, Tuesday May 16.

The offensive remarks were found scrawled onto the tower's heritage centre using coloured chalk.

Early enquiries indicate that these were written sometime between Wednesday, May 10, and Saturday, May 13.

Kilwinning Abbey, founded in the 1100s, is a scheduled monument - protected as a site of national importance as set out in the Ancient Monuments and Archeological Areas Act 1979.

As a result of this, Police had to take advice from Historic Environment Scotland and North Ayrshire Council's Streetscene team as to how to safely remove these.

The abbey required a specialist cleaning solution to remove it from the ashlar sandstone without causing further damage.

Having now launched an investigation into this, Police Scotland are looking for anyone with further information on these acts of vandalism to come forward.

A force spokesperson said: "Locality officers on routine cycle patrol yesterday found a series of racial and homophobic slurs written in coloured chalk on the Abbey Tower Heritage Centre, Kilwinning.

"Enquiries indicate the offensive chalk scrawls may have been written between Wednesday, May 10, 2023 and Saturday, May 13, 2023.

"Anyone with information, please call 101 - reference UA03820523.

"Alternatively, you can report information anonymously to Fearless - the Crimestoppers Scotland charity for young people aged 11 -16yrs - 0800 555."