Graffiti - reporting and removal

Graffiti is unsightly and illegal and can give a bad impression of an area. It is classed as anything which is written, scratched, painted or sprayed on the surface of any property. It can include anything from simple names to elaborate paintings.

We are responsible for keeping the city clean and free of litter and, where possible, we remove graffiti as part of the street cleaning programme.

What can I do if my property has graffiti on it?

  • Remove it as soon as it appears - quick removal discourages vandals.
  • Have matching paint available for instant removal.
  • Report graffiti as soon as you see it - don't wait for someone else to report it.
  • Make it easier to remove using special surface coatings.
  • Take action - if you have regular graffiti attacks, we can use our surveillance team to identify and prosecute graffiti vandals.

If there is graffiti on your property, complete the graffiti reporting e-form and give as much information as you can. We will remove offensive, racist or sexist graffiti as a priority. Please note that there may be a charge for this depending on the extent of the work that is needed.

How can I stop graffiti?

  • Avoid having outside walls painted white.
  • Apply pebble dash type surfaces to walls rather than smooth.
  • Plant shrubberies against walls to stop access.
  • Prevent access to roofs by coating drainpipes with anti climb paint.
  • Secure fencing around the property to stop easy access.
  • Install security cameras.
  • Coat walls with a suitable graffiti resistant coating.

What can I do if I see graffiti on someone else's property?

Complete the graffiti reporting form. When you report a problem, give as much information as you can so that we can deal with the problem quickly. If the graffiti is on someone else’s property we may need to get permission to remove it.

How is graffiti removed?

We use a number of methods:

  • Over painting on painted surfaces we will paint over the graffiti, we can’t guarantee to exactly match the existing colour and usually only cover the affected area.
  • Jet washing - Hot or cold, high pressure water washing of surfaces.
  • Chemical removal - We use a range of chemicals that are safe to the environment to remove paints, sprays and marker pens.

Is there any graffiti that can't be removed?

We are unable to remove graffiti from:

  • heights or where specialist training or equipment is needed.
  • surfaces where graffiti removal would cause further damage.

What happens if a person is caught de-facing property?

Please contact us if you have any information regarding offenders. All information will be treated in strictest confidence.

  • They will be issued with a £75 fixed penalty notice which must be paid within 14 days. If they do not pay then we will look at taking legal action which may result in a fine of up to £5,000 and a criminal record.
  • Photographs will be taken of the graffiti before it is removed. These will be added, along with the location and date, to a database. This will help us to identify the graffiti artist.

Useful forms