Brighton and Hove building owners could be given notices and fines if they do not remove graffiti vandalism quick enough

The city council said the quick removal of graffiti helps reduce cases of the vandalism

Brighton an Hove City Council has announced plans to issue warnings and notices to the owners of commercial premises and street furniture to give them a timescale to remove graffiti.

A council spokesman explained that if a Community Protection Warning giving a 7, 14 or 28-day timescale is ignored, a Community Protection Notice will be served on the owner, imposing a specific date that they are legally obliged to remove the graffiti.

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"As a last resort, we can now impose Fixed Penalty Notices or Prosecute property owners who ignore Community Protection Warnings and Notices that have been served," the spokesman said.

Graffiti being removed by the council team in London Road as part of a trial project. Usually the council will only remove offensive graffiti or graffiti on council property

The council said it has decided to extend Community Protection Warnings and Notices to cover graffiti vandalism from February 7.

The spokesman said: "The council is committed to reducing graffiti around the city. Evidence suggests that increased, quick removal of graffiti from premises and street furniture diminishes the incentive for graffiti vandals, resulting in less occurrences."

The council said the warnings and notices will allow it to impose timescales on owners of commercial premises and city infrastructure, such as phone kiosks and post boxes, to ensure any graffiti is removed from their property in a timely manner.

The spokesman added: "This will ensure we can work with property owners to advise, monitor and implement set timescales so incidents of graffiti around the city are targeted and removed quickly. Introducing measures to reduce and manage the amount of graffiti within the area will make our streets and neighbourhoods more attractive places to live, work and visit."

The warnings and notice timescales will be dependent on the extent of the graffiti, taking into account the size, height and whether specialist equipment is needed for removal.

Following feedback from the public consultation around the introduction of Community Protection Warning and Notices, the council said it has been agreed that homeowners, charities and community run facilities will be exempt from the scheme.

Councillor Amy Heley, co-chair of the Environment, Transport and Sustainability Committee, said: “The council is continuously working alongside other partners to reduce the amount of problem graffiti in the city.

“Introducing the use of community protection notices, allows us to work with, monitor and impose timescales on commercial property owners to take responsibility in ensuring graffiti is removed quickly.”

The council said it will only remove graffiti when it is offensive or on council property. If people see hate-based or offensive graffiti or stickering, they should report it to Cityclean online or by calling environmental enforcement hotline on 01273 295063.

The council aims to remove offensive graffiti and stickering within 24 hours of it being reported and then works with Sussex Police to prosecute offenders. For information about removing graffiti on private property, visit What to do about graffiti (brighton-hove.gov.uk)The new warnings and notices to tackle graffiti follow a successful project led by the council on London Road, Brighton. Over the last three months, teams have carried out 200 graffiti removals in the area on both public and private property. Read more on the project, which finishes at the end of January, here: London Road graffiti cleaning begins as part of three month trial by the Brighton and Hove City Council | Brighton & Hove Independent (brightonandhoveindependent.co.uk)READ MORE: Police appeal after 12-year-old boy assaulted and left unconscious by group of teenagers at Brighton basketball court | Brighton & Hove Independent (brightonandhoveindependent.co.uk)HAVE YOU READ: Streaming giant to team up with local musicians’ school | Brighton & Hove Independent (brightonandhoveindependent.co.uk)