Community combats ‘plague of vandalism’

Members of a close-knit Sheffield community have linked up together to combat what they view as an assault on their neighbourhood.

By Sally Burton
Thursday, 11 April, 2019, 08:34

Sponges, brushes and the determination to make a difference have led to the launch this weekend of the ‘Sharrow Experiment’.

To both support local businesses and test the power of ‘learning by example’, fed-up people who live and work around the area will meet at 10am on April 14

Supported financially by the Nether Edge Neighbourhood Group, the Sharrow Experiment supports shops and businesses at the junction of Wolstenholm Rd and Sharrow Lane.

This area is plagued by unsightly spray-painted ‘tags’ and doodles.

The project will support and equip local businesses to fight back by cleaning up walls, blinds and street furniture, and reacting quickly if and when new marks appear.

The six-month project is the brain child of longstanding local, Jack Massey, who has been visiting the eleven businesses, encouraging them to work together to improve the area.

After initial cleaning up and repainting work is completed, the project is providing paint, brushes and cleaning equipment that can be used to remove fresh graffiti.

They hope that their efforts will serve to discourage future vandalism, and perhaps even offering a model for other areas.

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Jack said: ‘We’ve got some amazing street art around Sheffield.

“Work by people like Kid Acne and Phlegm are brilliant, but random ‘tags’ like these ones send a signal that the neighbourhood is not cared for.

“It encourages litter and vandalism, and undermines local shops’ hard work.

“We are all like monkeys who can learn by copying the world around us.

“A clean and cared-for environment is a great positive model for everyone.

“I really hope that this project can make a difference.”

Mrs Roxana Munshi of Sharrow Pharmacy is looking forward to the clean up project.

She said: “I think it's a brilliant idea. I hope it succeeds.”