Bid To Rid The City Of Graffiti

This article featured in a local Canterbury free newspaper, April 1997.

Graffiti busters are coming to clean up Canterbury.

Graffiti Solutions, from Sussex, has agreed to rid Canterbury of the drawings and make patrols twice a week to keep the problem under control.

The company is to sign a contract, reputedly worth 100,000 pounds a year, with the Canterbury City Centre Initiative.

The Pride in Canterbury campaign is part of the CCI and its chairman, Peter Bryce, said he and his members had been trying to combat graffiti for the past two years.

"Five years ago the graffiti in Canterbury was almost gone, but it has started to come back," he said.

"We have identified 178 sites in the city which have graffiti. Some are covered with the stuff."

Mr Bryce said that once a wall is cleaned it only takes one vandal to start the cycle off again. He said many sprayed their nickname, or tag, onto walls.

"Once you have one 'tag' up there others want to come along and compete," he said.

"One offender, called 'Arche', was the worst. He was eventually identified by the police because he had sprayed his tag inside his car.

"These people are usually under-developed 21 and 22-year-olds who are not very bright."

Mr Bryce said graffiti had a disastrous effect on the image of Canterbury and that vandals often descended into lives of crime.

Letters have been sent to city centre businesses asking for their co-operation with the clean-up.

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