A UK Government poster that appears to claim that Dennis the Menace was “created in London” has sparked outrage.

SNP president Michael Russell called it “mental” while Ruth Watson, who founded the Keep Scotland The Brand campaign, said it was “disrespectful” to Beano publishers DC Thomson and the city of Dundee.

The poster features the iconic character on the shoulder of an executive from Beano Studios – based in London — which produces the Dennis and Gnasher tv series.

But Dennis was first created in 1951 in Dundee on the back of a cigarette packet by Scottish cartoonist David Law for DC Thomson, which is still based in the city.

Despite this history, the poster says: “Created in London. Unleashed in more than 100 countries”. It also appears to be part of the ‘Made in the UK, Sold to the World’ campaign run by the UK Government since 2021.

READ MORE: Secret origins of Dennis the Menace's iconic red and black jumper revealed

A quote from the executive, Rob Glenny, says: “Dennis and Gnasher have been making mischief together since 1951. These days, the CGI animated pranktastic pals are watched by millions of kids (and a few grown-ups) in more than 100 countries. Find out how exporting could grow your business.”

Gerry Hassan, a writer and academic, said: “As a proud Dundonian and long-time reader of the Beano as a kid this is incomprehensible, insulting and predictable.”

SNP MP for Dundee West Chris Law added: "Utter garbage from the [UK Government]. Dundee city created Dennis the Menace and Gnasher by publishers DC Thomsons. Cultural appropriation is a desperate measure to claim credibility." 

Russell, meanwhile, simply said: “That’s mental”.

Watson added: “When you're based in London, and you think of the North as being Birmingham, and you think of HS2 as being a national railway and it doesn't get more than a few hundred yards outside London then you just see the world through that prism.

“It's just so disrespectful to the creators of The Beano and all the hard work that DC Thompson have done and it being associated with Dundee.

“It's so disrespectful to the original artists, and the newspaper that has spent decades building this brand. You just have to go into the McManus Galleries in Dundee to see how central The Beano and Dennis the Menace are to that sense that Dundee has of itself.

“For an advertising campaign to disregard all of that heritage, it exemplifies why we have to work so hard to have Scotland's brand protected. Because it doesn't take much for somebody to come in and just appropriate what we've created.”

A government spokesperson said: “The Dennis and Gnasher animated series was created in London, based on the brilliant Beano cartoon that originated in Dundee. In this way it is the perfect representation of the ‘Made in the UK, Sold to the World’ campaign, which seeks to highlight success stories from across our great union of nations.

“We work closely with businesses like Beano to tell their start-up story, demonstrating the support the UK Government provides to help companies grow and export around the world."