Graffiti plagues town centre street

THIS is the ugly sight which has been greeting shoppers in Ipswich's town centre this week.

THIS is the ugly sight which has been greeting shoppers in Ipswich's town centre this week.

Now a call has been made to clean the graffiti which is scrawled across the side of stores in St Lawrence Street.

Suffolk county councillor Kevan Lim said: “This is a problem which has been going on for months.

“It is in the centre of town and is along one of the main thoroughfares between the Buttermarket and the main high street.

“The front of the jewellers is very attractive, so it seems strange that the back of the shop is covered in graffiti. It's not good for business.

“I spoke to the borough council and they said there's nothing they can do and it's a matter for the traders.”

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An Ipswich Borough Council spokesman confirmed the authority had spoken to store owners with a view to covering the unsightly graffiti and added: “All the council's graffiti team needs is the authorisation and the payment. We are ready to act. This is most frustrating.”

However, Sophia Ward, deputy manager at River Island, said painting the wall in the past had only been an invitation to yobs to return and again daub graffiti.

She said: “Last year we had the wall covered and within a day the graffiti was back again.

“We are looking into quotes to have it covered but we're looking at about £1,000.

“It doesn't look nice and seems as though we are not doing anything about it.

“If I am directing someone to our store, I always tell them to go a way which means they will avoid walking past the graffiti.”

Steven Girling, manager of Goldsmiths jewellers, which is situated opposite River Island, said: “I think it looks disgusting but I know the situation the likes of River Island are in because they have painted over the graffiti and then in no time the wall is sprayed again.

“To cover the wall is a vast expense which you don't account for.

“I think the answer to this is to install CCTV along here. This graffiti is not good for the shops and not good for Ipswich.”

Is graffiti blighting our town? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or e-mail