A PRO-INDEPENDENCE billboard has been given a new symbolic meaning after it was hit by vandals.

The “Independence is Normal” message had been put up by the local Yes group in Prestwick in early February, with support from Believe in Scotland and the Scottish Independence Foundation.

It was based on the main road through Prestwick to Ayr, near an Aldi where thousands of people would see it every day.

However, after slightly over a month, the billboard was hit by vandals.

The National:

They initially scrawled out the word “normal” with a red line, writing “mad” afterwards in its place.

They then appear to have tried again with black paint, writing “mad” again, and “madness” in the place of the word “normal”.

Police said they are probing the incident, which was reported to them earlier in the week.

Tom Mathers, from the local YES Prestwick group, told The National that discussions about how to remove the vandalism had led to the idea of using the space to show solidarity with people in Ukraine.

The war-torn nation was invaded by Russia in late February, sparking international outrage and widespread economic sanctions.

In an effort to show support for those people caught in the war and to cover the vandalism, the locals have painted their billboard with the colours of the Ukraine flag.

The National: The billboard on Thursday night, after local Yessers had covered the vandalismThe billboard on Thursday night, after local Yessers had covered the vandalism

A Police Scotland spokesperson said: "A report of vandalism to a billboard on Ayr Road in Prestwick was made around 3.15pm on Monday 14 March 2022.

"Enquiries are ongoing."