Teenagers hard work destroyed by yobs

VANDALS in Kesgrave have destroyed a giant mural in an underpass, peeling off paint and scrawling obscenities across it, just two weeks after it was completed.

VANDALS in Kesgrave have destroyed a giant mural in an underpass, peeling off paint and scrawling obscenities across it, just two weeks after it was completed.

Jason Smith, 29, and Debs Stacey and David Cubitt, both 16, spent over a week completing a colourful mural in the underpass in Ropes Drive in an attempt to ward off the vandalism and graffiti that had previously plagued the area.

Now their hours of hard work have been undermined by the mindless actions of vandals who have peeled off large areas of the paint and scrawled across the walls in marker pen.

Debs said: "I think that what's worst about it is the fact that they are peeling it off. If they were just writing on it at least people could see what was originally there, but now it's like it's all disappeared and was never there in the first place.

"We knew it would happen really. While we were working on it we tried to keep as much of an eye on it as possible, but once we'd finished it there wasn't really anything we could do.

"At least we can say we did it and we had fun doing it."

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The latest issue of the Kesgrave and Rushmere Community News features letters from residents who believe the mural was a bad idea in the first place.

One reader claims the idea of artistic graffiti is "like papering over the cracks and will only produce further competition from the offenders", another said: "the council have whitewashed over the problem of graffiti, sorry, painted artistically over it."

A spokesman for Kesgrave Town Council said: "It is such a shame as they put so much hard work into it, but we have vowed that we are not going to let the actions of a few people beat us.

"We have had many positive comments about it and the people criticising it are detracting from the hard work of the youngsters.

"We will continue looking at ways to solve the problem and Debs, David and Jason will all be given certificates and references from us as proof of their hard work."

N What do you think? Write in to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or email eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk or visit the forum at www.eveningstar.co.uk

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