RESIDENTS and councillors have called for action to tackle anti-vax graffiti which has been spotted around Bolton.

Graffiti proclaiming Covid-19 to be “fake”, a “hoax” and calling on people not to come forward for their vaccinations was seen at several locations across the borough over the last week.

Messages were seen on the side of a home on Plodder Lane, Farnworth and in Leverhulme Park in Darcy Lever.

A local resident, who spotted the graffiti, said: “Anti-vaxers and 'plandemic' pedlars are going on about how everyone else should wake up and how they are isolated and ridiculed for their beliefs Yet they are the ones breaking the law vandalising public and private property with graffiti and harassing people at vaccination centres.”

Cllr Sean Hornby, who represents Little Lever and Darcey Lever on Bolton Council, said: “I shall contact the head of green spaces to remove the graffiti as soon as possible.

“Whilst accepting people are entitle to their views, they are not entitled to commit criminal damage.”

This comes as Bolton Council, clinical commissioners and health bodies around the country are stepping up efforts to encourage as many people as possible to come forward for vaccinations in order to help product against the newly emergent Omicron variant of Covid-19 in particular.

At the start of December, public health officials confirmed the borough had recorded its first Omicron cases, linked to travel in southern Africa. The Health Security Agency and others then intensified their campaign to ensure as many people in Bolton are vaccinated as possible or receive their booster jabs.

Bolton has already been subject to local lockdowns and England’s highest infection rates at various points over the last 18 months with public health leaders saying vaccinations are key to avoiding such situations recurring.

Tackling misinformation, such as that in the graffiti has been a key aspect of public health policy since the beginning of the pandemic.