A seafront trader threatened with a fine if she doesn’t paint over tagging says the council should spend penalty money on paint.
Eva Hellqvist, who owns OhSoSwedish on Lower Esplanade next to the Palace Pier, was visited by environmental enforcement officers this week after vandals tagged the shop shutters.
Brighton and Hove City Council is now fining traders who leave graffiti up for more than 28 days as part of a drive to clean up the city.
Eva has agreed to do so – but after finding out the council has so far received £1,500 in fines from businesses who have left tags up, they say the proceeds should be spent on paint which can be requested by small traders.
Eva’s partner Ken Frost said: “Reducing graffiti is laudable. However, to criminalise the traders and threaten them with fines without offering them any help is a policy that is generating ill will from traders who already pay the council rent for ever diminishing services and support.
“My partner has asked the council many times for paint to cover up the graffiti to no avail.
“At the very least I suggest it uses the £1,500 raised thus far to supply the traders with paint to cover up the graffiti.”
A council spokesperson said: “We will be reviewing the council’s policy on graffiti management with immediate effect.
“The idea of spending money collected from graffiti fines on paint for traders is an interesting one. We’re very grateful to OhSoSwedish for suggesting it.
“This suggestion will be considered during our review, and we would welcome any other ideas residents have for getting rid of graffiti.
“Residents can report graffiti on www.brighton-hove.gov.uk/graffiti or by calling our graffiti hotline on 01273 295063.”