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Report graffiti

Graffiti is anything that is written, sprayed or painted on public or private property. It's illegal to do this without permission.

Graffiti in public places

If there is offensive graffiti in public places, the council street cleaning team will come and remove or paint over it.  They will arrange for the removal of the graffiti in a timescale determined by the content, with the highest priority likely to be given to graffiti which is racist or offensive in some other way.

Not all graffiti is removable in the first instance and sometimes shading does occur.

Offensive graffiti contains words or pictures which are:

  • racist
  • sexist
  • ageist
  • anti-faith
  • homophobic
  • full of swear words 

The council are also responsible for removing graffiti on council property, including buildings, benches, signs and street lights.

They are not responsible for the removal of other graffiti problems like tagging - the signing of a name. There are commercial graffiti removal companies in Hertfordshire that provide this service.

Graffiti on private property

Private properties are often a target for graffiti offenders, and managing costs associated with removing graffiti can be difficult. By taking simple steps to report, remove and prevent, the likelihood of being a target for future graffiti vandalism can be reduced.

If you have graffiti on private property, you (as the owner or landowner of the property) can report criminal damage to us.  If the graffiti is deemed to be offensive, let the council know and they may remove the graffiti.

If the graffiti is not offensive, it is the responsibility of the property owner or landowner to remove the graffiti.  The council can provide advice, but you will need to contact a private company to remove it.

If you want to prevent and remove graffiti from private property, you could:

  • apply an uneven wall surface like pebble dash or flint work
  • cover your wall in trellis, iron work or climbing plants
  • paint your own mural on your wall
  • keep spare paint for walls - painting over graffiti is the best way of stopping problems
  • paint over a whole wall, not just the section - walls with patches of paint often get covered in graffiti again

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