An MP has demanded an urgent investigation into the alleged vandalism of a "vitally important" historic sign in Rush Green.

An iron sign featuring the Essex crest has been "dumped" beside land at the border of Rush Green Road and Wood Lane, according to Andrew Rosindell.

The Romford MP said it forms the facade of a bridge over an underground stream, and he alleges most of the bridge wall has also been knocked down.

In a letter to Havering Council chief executive Andrew Blake-Herbert, Mr Rosindell wrote: "It is a vitally important part of our local heritage. This has always been a visual reminder that while we have close ties to London, we nevertheless remain a proud part of the historic county of Essex."

He asked Mr Blake-Herbert to "urgently investigate" and restore the site to its former state.

A council spokesperson claimed the bridge, known as Wood Lane Culvert, is owned by Barking and Dagenham Council.

"They will be investigating the structural damage reported and will outline any repairs necessary in due course.”

Barking and Dagenham Council did not comment.