Auf Wiedersehen, Scary Jesus, you were fun while you lasted

REMEMBER that 20ft-tall scarecrow that got Christian knickers in Billericay all of a twist? Well, it’s no more, having been torched last week. All that remains is the massive wooden cross on which it was mounted. Which should please foolish Jesus fanatics no end.


According to this report, the giant scarecrow in a “Messianic” pose was destroyed in flames after being set alight twice last Thursday. The charred remains were discovered by workers at Barleylands Farm Park on Friday morning.

It’s appearance  in the first week of lent upset some batshit crazy Christians, who saw it as a parody of Jesus’ crucifixion, and outrage was expressed.

Essex County Fire and Rescue Service attended the blaze on Barleylands Road at 11:23 on Thursday, February 21 and they described the fire as deliberate. The fire was extinguished by five fire fighters within 17 minutes but at 12:10am the crew were called out for a second time.

David Finkle, general manager at Barleylands Farm Park and Craft Village, helped to make the scarecrow and its smaller equivalent to promote the farm’s half term activities for children. The scarecrow took a team of four people two days to make.

Finkle said:

There’s nothing left of the scarecrow but there’s an element of me which isn’t surprised.
We rolled in on Friday morning to see the scorched, blackened remains and our hearts sank – we’re bitterly disappointed. The fact that they returned back to set the scarecrow alight for a second time must have meant they had their mind set on destroying it.

I spoke to the Crime Unit at Essex Police and they said it must have taken serious effort for the scarecrow to be reignited. All that remained in the morning was the plastic used to stuff the scarecrows head, the wooden cross made from a telegraph pole and the smaller scarecrow.

The Farm Park has since removed the smaller scarecrow which was not burnt down but stood next to the larger one.

Hat tip: Pete H

33 responses to “Auf Wiedersehen, Scary Jesus, you were fun while you lasted”

  1. Trevor Blake says:

    Here in the United States there is also a group of Christians known for setting large wooden crosses on fire.

  2. remigius says:

    Last Wednesday I wrote the comment…

    ‘If it’s still there in 3 days we’ll know it’s not really Jesus.’

    On Friday the scarecrow was no longer there. That’s me converted.

    He has risen!

  3. charlie says:

    ain’t old ‘Merikkka just grand?

  4. Graham Martin-Royle says:

    Is their religious belief so threatened that a scarecrow could undermine it? Incredible.

  5. David Anderson says:

    Beat me to it GM-R. On the other hand I’m worried that somebody thought that was Boris and it was payback for being thrown under the bus.

  6. Stonyground says:

    It still doesn’t look like a crucifix to me, or even a parody of one, it looks like a large scarecrow. Of course we don’t really know who set fire to it or why, the notion that it was disgruntled Christians is only speculation. I expect Barleylands got a fair amount of publicity from it anyway.

    OT, but this made me laugh, especially the comments which are mostly unsympathetic.

  7. Graham Martin-Royle says:

    @Stonyground: What a great link. Typical religious types, demanding that they be allowed to invade private property for free simply because they’re religious.

  8. JohnMWhite says:

    “Because they’re religious” seems to be the excuse for pretty much anything. Genital mutilation of children, sexual abuse of children, mental torment of children, deliberately putting children in danger of sexually transmitted diseases by keeping them ignorant, burning down scarecrows made to amuse children, stopping women from accessing health care so that they are forced to have unwanted children…

    They sure do care about children. Could it be because they’re religious.

  9. barriejohn says:

    There have been many stories similar to the Dundee one highlighted on the NSS site over the years (along with the ceaseless demands that councils provide free transport for children attending “faith schools”). The usual cry is that Sunday parking charges are a “tax on churchgoers”, as if they alone should have the right to leave their vehicles where they like when they want. The sense of entitlement is breathtaking. They couldn’t possibly see that providing them with free parking on a Sunday amounts to the rest of us subsidising THEM!

  10. barriejohn says:

    This one is great, and so are the comments:

    Vicar: “The major issue for us will be our Sunday service – parking has always been free on Sundays and now they will have to pay to worship. It’s incredible really,” he said.

    Comment: Yet one more example of Christians complaining that they are being singled out for persecution when in reality they are being treated exactly the same as everyone else. No one is picking on them, they are just being expected to act like every other British person.

    But I understand this behaviour is inevitable as a persecution complex seems to be a requirement to accepting Jesus as their personal saviour.

  11. Don says:

    It probably struck some kids as something that would burn really well. I grew up rural.

  12. Don says:

    Is the vicar the one in the tinted glasses looking bad-ass? That’s quite a posse.

    If you have to pay to park to access amenities that’s unforunate, be those amenities be church, library, museum or whatever. But times are hard. So pony up like the rest of us.

  13. barriejohn says:

    Don: Provincial newspapers in Britain are notorious for such shots. The photographer tells the subject to look really angry and upset, and the result is something which is nothing less than an embarrassment to them; but at the time they are so keen for their voice to be heard that they willingly comply. Television, too, delights in making members of the public look stupid, but they are so thrilled to be courted by the media that they are oblivious to what is really going on!

  14. Robster says:

    The godbots could create a new and exciting mission using the remaining cross thingy. How about borrowing a dead jesus statue from a local church and nail that unpleasant thing up? That’d scare the kids and keep the godbots happy. Or, put up the dead jesus and hide some helium balloons somewhere inside the dead jesus and for use a remote control to inflate the balloons, sending the dead jesus skyward. They could refer to this as the “second going” of the baby jesus. There’s already a second cross there apparently, they could rent that out to people who think they’re jesus and for a small fee, they could be nailed up too along side the plastic dead jesus. That’d be a winner!

  15. […] then "somebody" set fire to the scarecrow howwible nasty persecutowy mockewy-cwoss. Twice. The second time only half an hour […]

  16. John A says:

    ‘the giant scarecrow in a “Messianic” pose was destroyed in flames…’
    If a scarecrow in a traditional scarecrow pose can be considered to be a parody of Jesus’ crucifixion then what next? Does wearing a towel wrapped around your head after getting out of the bath mean you’re being parodical of Mohammed, or perhaps if I carry on eating too many pies I will be accused of insulting followers of Buddha?
    Who would have thought life could be so complicated?

  17. barriejohn says:

    “Messy back alley anger” – hahaha!!! Why do people have to crouch down and point at the offending objects, in the most unnatural poses? Why can’t these matters be reported without the inclusion of these ridiculous photographs? (He missed the Swindon Advertiser, which must have been one of the worst offenders for donkey’s years!)

  18. AgentCormac says:

    If only local newspapers and their photographers had been around in biblical times. Just imagine the photo of ‘Angry Creator’ accompanying the reports of god’s pique with Adam and Eve, the entire human population (except for Noah and his tribe), not to mention Sodom & Gomorrah.

  19. The Woggler says:

    Sorry, just picked up on the Coventry Parking Fees Controversy. “….now they will have to pay to worship.”

    Or they could worship from the comfort of their own homes. But I forget, they need to be seen to be worshiping, otherwise their omniscient deity might not spot it.

  20. remigius says:

    Woggler, in fact it’s exactly the opposite. Baby Jesus told them not to pray in public…

    ‘And when thou prayest, thou shalt not be as the hypocrites are: for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward.But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly.’ Matt 6:5-6 KJV

  21. barriejohn says:

    Woggler: We went a bit off-topic there because of a story that Stonyground found, but it’s all grist to the mill!

  22. Stonyground says:

    Sorry, I didn’t mean to derail the thread. I suppose there is only so much that can be said about a scarecrow being vandalised so I don’t suppose it was that much of a tragedy.

  23. barriejohn says:

    No one’s complaining, Stonyground!

  24. remigius says:

    OT. Habemus nullus papa 🙂

  25. barriejohn says:

    “Where there’s smoke there’s Pope”!

  26. remigius says:

    barriejohn, he’s just had his ring hammered by a priest.

    Oh, the irony!

  27. barriejohn says:

    There’s no answer to that one, Remigius. However, I did wonder whether, with his little red shoes and nice, colourful frocks, he might be appearing in that new Wizard of Oz production, but I see that it’s a prequel, so no Dorothy is required!

    (No Yellow Brick Road, either: )

  28. Marky Mark says:

    So they burned the scarecrow because they think it somewhat resembled their deity, or one of them. These people are beyond logic and a danger to all around them. Just like the evangelical fanatics here in the USA who shoot Doctors and bomb Abortion Clinics…they think they are above the law.

    What gets me is they burned the darn thing twice that night. It means they were hiding nearby watching or drove by later to check out their handiwork.

  29. Lidia says:

    “now they will have to pay to worship.”

    Hmm, do they complain about the gasoline costs? Would they like their car payments subsidized? What are we talking about here?

    Just WALK to church, and then your worship transit will be free, won’t it? For further savings, stay home and pray and save the money on the wasteful building and the parasitic pastor. Now THAT’s free!!

  30. […] Read Auf Wiedersehen, Scary Jesus, you were fun while you lasted […]