Police are treating the leaving of a pig’s head outside the site of a proposed mosque as a potential hate crime.

Officers were called to Mosley Street in Barnoldswick, Lancashire, at 2.10pm on Sunday to a report of a racially aggravated public order offence outside the former Methodist church building.

A probe is under way with a dedicated team of officers carrying out house-to-house inquiries and checking surrounding CCTV footage, as well as visiting local butchers and abattoirs.

Patrols have also been stepped up to give reassurance, police said.

Inspector Claire Pearson, from the Pendle and Ribble Valley neighbourhood policing team, said: “I want to make it clear that we do not tolerate hate of any form and we are taking this incident extremely seriously.

“We have a dedicated team of officers assigned to this case and they are working around the clock to identify those responsible.

“I am sure the residents of Barnoldswick will be equally as appalled by this behaviour and I want to appeal directly to them to contact the police if they have any information or footage which would assist us in our enquiries.”

Ibrar Ahmed, from the Barnoldswick Islamic Centre, said: “This incident is not aligned with the spirit of Barnoldswick, where Muslims have been an integral part of the community since the 1960s.

“The Barnoldswick Islamic Centre remains committed to fostering peace and harmony, working alongside everyone in our town to promote understanding. The Barnoldswick we know and call home is a place of friendship and respect, and together, we’ll ensure it stays that way.”

Anyone with information should email forcecontrolroom@lancashire.police.uk or call 101, quoting log 845 of October 8 2023.

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