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Calls for Norwich estate to have graffiti crackdown of its own

PUBLISHED: 08:26 22 July 2011

John Cena has made a list of graffiti tags around West Pottergate and Distillery Square in Norwich.; Photo: Bill Smith

John Cena has made a list of graffiti tags around West Pottergate and Distillery Square in Norwich.; Photo: Bill Smith

Archant © 2011

A dossier on graffiti containing information about hundreds of tags on a city estate is to be handed to police at a meeting on Monday to try to force a crackdown to be carried out.

The West Centre Safer Neighbourhood Team (SNT) is being urged to follow the example of the City Centre SNT, which is currently targeting graffiti as a priority following complaints from people living in its area,

John Cena, 39, who lives in Douro Place, off Dereham Road, Norwich, has completed his own audit of graffiti in the area, including Golding Place, Charles Square, Distillery Square and West Pottergate, and found hundreds of tags in just a few hours.

Mr Cena has recorded his findings on five sheets of A4 paper, which are to be handed to police at the area’s Safer Neighbourhood Action Panel (SNAP) meeting on Monday.

Mr Cena, who has lived in Douro Place for three years, said: “I’m afraid it gives a bad impression of the estate.

“There are many elderly residents and they’re in fear of anti-social behaviour on the estate and it [the graffiti] makes it worse.

“I’ve seen tagging on CSI New York and its getting like that round here now. It’s been an ongoing problem on this estate – it’s just an eyesore everywhere you look.”

Mr Cena, who lives with his wife Vicky, 42, said tags found in the area included Shook, Zorrow, Pegleg, Acab, Quir, Anoyz, Tike, Thirsty and Big.

Some people living in the area, including Mr Cena, have painted out some of the graffiti themselves, but want to see a more permanent solution to the problem.

Mr Cena, who was speaking yesterday ahead of a walkabout to discuss issues and problems affecting those living on the estate – which has been organised by the city council’s area team, including manager and wardens – said: “I’m going to raise it as an issue on Monday.”

Mr Cena said there were also problems with graffiti in and around the underpass in West Pottergate – the city’s only official graffiti tolerance zone –with tags spreading to the ceiling and pavements and walls outside.

He said: “Some of the art work in the underpass is rather nice to look at but I think it’s just being spoiled by the tags which are everywhere you look.”

Carol Jones, the city council’s neighbourhood manager for the area, said graffiti was one of the problems being suffered by the area, which also included dog fouling.

The Evening News launched its Graffitibusters campaign in a bid to try to combat the growing number of illegal graffiti tags which are threatening to spoil our fine city. The campaign, which is being supported by Norwich police, Central Norwich Citizens Forum, Norwich City Council and the Norwich City Centre Partnership, has urged people to donate money, paint or time to help keep the streets clean.

Have you got a story for the campaign? Call reporter Peter Walsh on 01603 772436 or email peter.walsh@archant.co.uk

The West Centre Safer Neighbourhood Team will be meeting at Gateway Vineyard Church on Nelson Street, Norwich, at 7pm on Monday. For more information call 0845 456 4567.

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