From The Argus –
A property expert is demanding the city council take action against what he calls ugly illegal tagging and graffiti across Brighton and Hove.
Robert Perry, partner at Stiles Harold Williams, said there has been a lack of urgency to tackle the problem, and he feels there has been a general defacement of buildings in the city.
He argues thousands of pounds is spent on just one property to remove the scrawlings, only for them to be replaced within days.
Mr Perry said: “We can all applaud the satirical artistic merit of Banksy and his ilk, and some street art in Brighton and Hove is well done.
“However, a large proportion of it is just tagging which is an expensive blight on the city and its commercial and residential property owners.
“In 28 years property management in the city I’ve never known it as bad as this.
“Repeatedly trying to keep these buildings clean uses up valuable time, resources and money – and we would appreciate greater support from the council and police alike in dealing with the issue.
“Recent press coverage has focused on some of the more creative and eye-catching street art in the city, but many areas are covered with tags and ugly, thoughtless doodling.
“It is clearly displayed on the council website that it is illegal to graffiti on any surface without the owner’s permission.”
Brighton and Hove City Council has no responsibility for graffiti on private buildings, although it will clean off offensive graffiti such as anything obscene or racist.
For anything else, private owners must bear the cost in the same way they would for any other maintenance or criminal damage.
A council spokesman said: “Since our engagement of enforcement contractor 3GS earlier in the year, enforcement action against environmental crimes is at its highest level ever.
“We do clean public property such as street furniture and public buildings.
“There were 15 £75 fixed penalty notices issued for graffiti or flyposting between February and August this year.
“It’s obviously difficult to catch people doing this as it typically happens in the dead of night.
“As graffiti without permission can be a criminal offence we would suggest people report it to the police.”