Graffiti Good Samaritan's shock when the police knocked on his door - The Redditch Standard

Graffiti Good Samaritan's shock when the police knocked on his door

Redditch Editorial 11th Aug, 2017   0

WHEN the police turned up at Craig Hunt’s door he thought it was to do with a breakthrough in his mother’s case.

She’s 94 years old, blind, and her house has been burgled twice.

So he was astonished when instead the woman police constable presented him with a bill for £277.50 for the repainting of sections of Studley skate park.

Craig is the mystery man who painted over disgusting graffiti scrawled on the popular facility by two young hooligans.

As the Redditch Standard revealed last week the parish council’s finance committee heard how someone had used the wrong paint and acted without permission, and had decided to bill the culprit for the repair.

Craig, who was born and bred in the village, said couldn’t believe it: “It’s totally illogical,” he said. “I’ve done the parish council a favour and they’ve sent me a bill for it.”

The retired bank worker is a pillar of the community.

If there’s litter to be picked up or something needs tidying, he will do it and he volunteers for Studley in Bloom and Studley Nature Reserve.

Craig first fell foul of the parish council some six months ago when youngsters were caught on CCTV spraying graffiti on the skate park.

“The graffiti was disgusting, certainly not what you’d want your children to see, and had been there for three weeks,” he said.

Craig’s repsonse was to paint over the offending words and drawings.

It brought him a rebuke from the parish council for acting without their knowledge and for using the wrong paint, but he got a promise that should any more offensive words or pictures be sprayed, they would be removed immediately.

This time round five days passed without the parish council acting and so Craig leapt into action, sparking an immediate reaction from the council.

“They said I didn’t use anti-slip paint, which is true, but the surface of the park is worn smooth, so the paint I used is grippier than what is there,” he said.

Craig’s plight has won him widespread support with talk of raising a fund to pay his bill, however parish chairman Councillor Paul Beaman, who’s tried to recruit Craig as a fellow councillor, says that might not be necessary.

“The parish clerk is under strict instructions if we have any damage to council property then it goes straight to the police and it’s up to the police how the deal with it,” said Coun Beaman.

“If Craig had telephoned the clerk, told her what he wanted to do we would have said fine, go ahead, and made sure he had the correct paint. But no call was made.

“However all decisions have to be approved by full council and I will be pressing not to pursue this matter any further.”

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