Glasgow acts on obscene graffiti in TWO DAYS. Riverside ‘showpiece’ a disgrace for weeks on end

by Colin Campbell

WHICH city has a bigger problem with graffiti strewn across it, ugly, offensive and in some cases obscene?

Inverness or Glasgow?

I don’t think you’d need to be an expert in the sociology of mindless vandalism to come up with the answer to that question.

When a large, particularly obscene depiction was imprinted on the Ness riverside Gathering Place in mid December it was left in place and untouched for over a month.

This wasn’t a scrawl in some backyard alleyway. It adorned the £360,000 concrete slab built by the council in the face of huge public opposition on a natural riverside beauty spot, intended to be a city “showpiece”.

The council swept aside public concern, including repeated warnings that it would be a magnet for vandals, in its obsession with building this appalling monstrosity.

By mid December, a couple of months after it was opened, it had already been vandalised by graffiti several times and was taking on the appearance of a patched up concrete slum.

But the addition of a depiction of a giant male sex organ topped the lot.

It dominated the site and because it was so explicit dominated the riverside. Kids used to play there. That changed to parents with children going anywhere near it virtually having to shield their eyes.

But the council was in no hurry to remove or cover it, none at all.

In response to an inquiry 10 days ago about when action would finally be taken, a spokeswoman languidly said it wouldn’t happen until water levels subsided and it was safe to do so.

Maybe around March, April or May. Perhaps. Until then their ultimate riverside showpiece would remain a humiliation, disgrace and embarrassment.

That was beyond pathetic.

Last week, following demands for action the council finally got its act together.

But for the level of protest, this disgusting chunk of graffiti would be in prime position on our “jewel in the crown” riverside for weeks ahead.

A correspondent now draws our attention to the policy of Glasgow City Council in relation to graffiti in all its forms.

On their website they make a commitment to the public: “Our Graffiti Removal Service removes graffiti and flyposting identified by the public or partners across the city. They also proactively identify and remove graffiti and flyposting observed whilst on patrol across Glasgow. If you spot graffiti in any area of Glasgow we want to hear from you. Once reported, graffiti will be removed within 20 working days and any offensive graffiti will be removed within 2 working days.”

So across the vast urban sprawl of Glasgow, obscene graffiti is guaranteed to be removed within TWO DAYS.

And yet in the most scenically prominent part of Inverness it was apparently acceptable for it to be left untouched for more than a month, and possibly much longer.

Apathy and chronic negligence aren’t strong enough descriptions for that attitude towards the Highland capital.

Neither can the council bleat that their counterparts in Glasgow have greater resources. We can be sure they also have a vastly greater quantity of graffiti to deal with as well.

This may happen again at the Gathering Place. Now that we’re stuck with it – for the time being, anyway – everyone hopes it doesn’t but if it does the council has the responsibility to fix it.

They insisted on building their riverside monstrosity and now they have the responsibility for dealing with the consequences, all of them.

And if obscene depictions do appear again, as in Glasgow, they should be removed within TWO DAYS.

Not ignored, sidelined, forgotten about and left staring in the face of the public for excruciatingly embarrassing weeks on end.

One thought on “Glasgow acts on obscene graffiti in TWO DAYS. Riverside ‘showpiece’ a disgrace for weeks on end

  1. Colin,
    The Gathering Place graffiti has still not been removed. An Industrial cleaner did visit the site last Thursday but did not clean off the offensive material. As regards other graffiti in the city, for example on brand new parking meters in Ardross Street , graffiti has not been removed 2 weeks after HIghland Council were informed..


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