Shop owners blighted by tagging to be targeted in 12-month council graffiti blitz

Posted On 02 Sep 2022 at 4:52 pm

A teenager runs away after being caught tagging the cafe in broad daylight

Shops and offices in zones regularly targeted by taggers are to be threatened with fines if they don’t clear it off as part of a year-long council drive to tackle graffiti.

Church Road, George Street and Boundary Road, in Hove, are the first three areas to be tackled by Brighton and Hove City Council in the coming weeks.

In each zone, street cleaners will remove graffiti from council property for two weeks, while enforcement officers issues notices and warnings of fines to owners of street furniture and commercial premises which don’t do the same.

Spacewords Brighton

Councillor Hannah Clare, deputy leader of the council, said: “We know that many residents feel passionate about graffiti and tagging and we are committed to trying new ways of taking action on clearing it up.

“Since launching our Graffiti Reduction Strategy, we’ve been working alongside other partners, like the police, on a variety of measures to help combat the growing issue of graffiti vandalism.

“Our aim of targeting problems streets one-by-one is to create clean areas where residents, traders and visitors can see the difference. We hope this will encourage people to work together to keep areas free from graffiti area for longer.

“We will also be working with our partners to remove graffiti from all public infrastructure. We would welcome the support of businesses to help the push to remove graffiti too.

“For residents – we would ask that if you see anyone tagging in the city, please report it. We hope that by everyone working together, we can ensure we reduce the amount of graffiti around.”

Church Road will be targeted on Monday 12 September, then George Street, followed by Boundary Road next month.

Preston Street, Ship Street, Middle Street and Upper Lewes Road, in Brighton, will be tackled during November and December.

The council will write to commercial property owners in the areas ahead of the action asking them to remove any graffiti from their property to support efforts to tackle graffiti.

The council introduced community protection warnings and notices earlier this year to help tackle graffiti on commercially owned buildings and street furniture, such as phone kiosks and post boxes.

Owners are sent a community protection warning with a timescale to remove graffiti.

If no action is taken and the warning ignored, a community protection notice will be served, which imposes a specific date by which they are legally obliged to remove the graffiti.

As a final resort, the council will impose fixed penalty notices or prosecute property owners who ignore community protection warnings and notices that have been served.

Community protection warnings and notices include a timescale of seven, 14 or 28 days to ensure graffiti is removed within a timely manner. This is dependent on the extent of the graffiti, taking into account the size, height and whether specialist equipment is needed for removal.

Homeowners, charities and community-run facilities are exempt from the scheme.

Anyone who sees someone tagging can call the council on 01273 295063 to give details of the offence from 7.30am to 3.30pm Monday to Friday, with voicemail outside these hours.

Environmental enforcement officers can fine anyone £150 found drawing graffiti on public and private land where they don’t have the landowner’s permission.

The council only removes graffiti when it’s offensive or on council property.

  1. Charles U Farley Reply

    Excellent. Let’s punish the victims of crime rather than tackle the perpetrators.
    Gotta love that green mindset.

  2. Katy Reply

    So yet again the Green administration fails to understand the real needs of residents. Instead of having sensible solutions to removing graffiti, something they have done nothing about for years, they now intend to make the victims pay to remove it. Let’s penalize the victim with a cost of living crisis looming.
    They are so out of touch and really not fit to be sorting out our city.

  3. vintage fan Reply

    So ……punish the victims of graffiti and tagging, not the perpetrators! Talk about twisted logic;
    Are the council going to fund paints, paintbrushes etc for affected businesses etc?
    Council should be removing/paitnong over graffiti on ALL buildings, not just council owned buildings.
    Greens out!

  4. Mike Beasley Reply

    Cllr Clare’s judgment has been seriously impaired since her virtual cycling accident on the OSR.

  5. MegA Reply

    “…street cleaners will remove graffiti from council property for two weeks, while enforcement officers issues notices and warnings of fines to owners of street furniture and commercial premises which don’t do the same”
    DO NOT PUNISH businesses – help them! Clean up Haddington Street while you are at it – worse than George Street.

  6. Julie Reply

    So the offender, if caught, may get a fine of £150,
    The council will remove graffiti from public property etc for 2 weeks, which will have to be found from their budget and is ultimately funded by us.
    Businesses, who are the victims of this crime, will have pay the cost to remove/repaint the targeted premises themselves, maybe over and over again or face fixed penalty fines.
    My questions are:
    1) How many offenders have been caught & fined in past 12 months?
    2) Why does the fine not include an additional amount related to the cost of rectifying the damage caused?
    3) What happens to graffiti on public property after the 2 weeks in these areas. Will the council receive fixed penalty notices and fines if it is not removed?
    4) How much are the fixed penalty fines payable by businesses and are they able to appeal if they are able to show no action is being taken by police or Environmental Enforcement team to stop ongoing damage?

    I agree that graffiti in Brighton & Hove is an issue for many residents, businesses etc who are fed up with a few spoiling it for the majority. This is also true about much of the anti social behaviour that occurs by a few that have no regard for others & where there is little or no action taken by police or appropriate authorities.

  7. Bear Road resident Reply

    In a further “make the victim of crime pay” declaration today Brighton council have announced that enforcement officers will issue notices and warnings of fines to victims of stabbings for the cost of cleaning up their blood from the pavement.

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