Revising the Graffiti Reduction Strategy

We’re about to begin work on improving the Graffiti Reduction Strategy to tackle tagging offences in the city.

Tagging is an ongoing and increasing problem in our city, and we want to do more to ensure our streets and public spaces are well-maintained, clean and attractive.

A proposal to the City Environment, South Downs and The Sea Committee on 19 September will seek permission to start a consultation on revising the strategy.

We’ll look to rename the strategy the ‘Graffiti Tagging Reduction Strategy’ to make it clear its purpose is to tackle illegal tagging offences, not graffiti art.

Listening to residents and businesses

If the proposal is approved, we’ll be keen to hear from residents and businesses how they think we can improve tackling problem graffiti in the city.

The public consultation will ask residents and businesses to share their ideas and feedback on the strategy so far.

As well as a public consultation, we’ll host engagement events to speak with residents and businesses directly about the problems we’re facing.

Actions to prevent, enforce, remove and monitor

The current graffiti reduction strategy focuses on four key areas - prevention, enforcement, removal and monitoring and reviewing.

Since the strategy was agreed in 2018, we’ve:

  • introduced Community Protection Warnings (CPWs) and Community Protection Notices (CPNs) to impose timescales on businesses and statutory undertakers to remove tagging from their premises or street infrastructure, such as phone boxes or bus shelters
  • launched a year-long programme of targeted action zones to remove graffiti in busy areas
  • shared intelligence with the police, community groups and other council services to track down and prosecute offenders
  • set up greater surveillance at known hot spots, including The Level
  • expanded our enforcement team
  • organised joint patrols and worked closely with Sussex Police

We’re know that we need to do more to tackle tagging offences in the city and based on our experiences over the last 5 years, we’ve considered how we might do things differently in the future.

Actions to consider

By speaking directly with residents and businesses in the city, we hope to identify new and alternative methods to tackle tagging offences.

As well as this, we’ll also be looking for feedback from residents and businesses on our proposed actions to inform the revised strategy.

The actions we’re considering are:


  • working with statutory undertakers to remove unused street furniture to tidy up the city
  • exploring opportunities for more public art and murals to deter taggers
  • raising the profile of successful prosecutions


  • working closely with Sussex Police to identify opportunities for immediate justice where offenders have to repair the damage they’ve caused within 48 hours
  • increasing the Fixed Penalty Notices (FPN) for graffiti offences from £150 to £500


  • re-charging the cost of tagging removal to the property owner to ensure full cost recovery
  • more robust pursuing of large business who don’t remove tagging in a timely manner
  • Making reporting easier and quicker

Monitoring and Measuring

  • looking at opportunities for improved intelligence sharing with Sussex Police
  • Working with other community groups to identify perpetrators

Your views will shape the strategy

All views from the engagement events and public consultation will be used to inform the revised graffiti tagging reduction strategy.

This will be discussed at the council’s City Environment, South Downs and The Sea Committee for final approval.

Clean and attractive Brighton & Hove

Councillor Tim Rowkins, Chair of the City Environment, South Downs and The Sea Committee, said: “Tagging has blighted the city for too long, and has only got worse.

“We’re really keen to make a distinction between graffiti tagging and graffiti art. With the permission of the property owner, graffiti art can enhance our city’s cultural offer but graffiti tagging is criminal vandalism and impacts residents, businesses and visitors.

“Revising the Graffiti Tagging Reduction Strategy is our route to improving the situation and it’s important to us that we seek meaningful input from those who are impacted by tagging offences in the city, which is why we will be starting a public consultation and hosting a number of engagement events.

“We’re hoping to explore new ideas about how to tackle tagging offences in the city and would love to hear from residents and businesses how they think we can continue to prevent, enforce, remove and monitor tagging offences in the future.”

Reporting graffiti in the city

If you see hate-based or offensive graffiti or stickering, please report it though our environmental enforcement hotline on 01273 295 063 or our online request a clean-up form.

Related news