Owen Shaw, a gardener with All-Ways Gardening who regularly works near Digby’s lighthouse, was walking his dog along Admiral’s Walk Thursday, August 17 around 6 p.m. when he spotted the small graffiti by the cannon’s royal insignia.
He saw three small indistinguishable letters crossed out, seemingly carved into the black paint with a key.
Shaw feels confident the incident must have happened that day since he works in the area so often.
“I would be among the first to notice something like this. It doesn’t matter that it’s small – I’m still in disbelief this has happened,” he said.
Not a common occurrence
In the two years he’s worked in Loyalist Park along the Admiral’s Walk, Shaw has never seen anything defaced.
Neither has Digby’s mayor Ben Cleveland, who says this is the first occurrence of vandalism on the site he knows of.
“To my knowledge, this has never happened before,” said Cleveland.
“Historically speaking, vandalism has never been a serious problem in Digby.”
The cannons were fabricated during the reign of Queen Victoria and are a part of Digby’s historic waterfront.
Shaw says he’s disappointed that someone would vandalize any part of that, no matter how small.
“Its size doesn’t change the fact that this is a big deal, and shouldn’t have happened,” he said.
After posting the photo on Facebook, he found several of his friends agreed with him.
Bad timing too
Shaw says it’s even more upsetting that it happened either during or right after the recent Tall Ships regatta event, a time when even more people than usual are strolling along the waterfront.
The small silver lining according to Shaw is that covering it over would be an easy fix.
But to him, that’s only a partial consolation.
“If I were able to speak to who did this, I think I would simply ask, ‘what were you thinking?’ Tourists shouldn’t be seeing that – it’s not really what Digby is,” said Shaw.
“We’re better than that.”
See also: First day of tall ships event in Digby