No,no,no this is not going to be a post about skating in a harsh urban environment involving burnt out buildings,worklessness and drug abuse. This is going to be a post about graffiti in the the pleasant but lets face it twee environment of Appledore, Devon.
True, in down town Appledore, there are gangs. The gangs in question are of familial make up. They roam the nearby lanes in Audi’s and 4x4s. They have a strict dress code. The leaders wear Breton smocks, the young female members wear leggings and regrettably on occasion the older female members do too. The place is run in open partnership with the drug trade. Crowded pubs and overflowing recycling bins are testament to the gangs dependency on Chardonnay,Tribute ale and gin and tonic. The gangs hold festivals to celebrate their depraved lifestyle. Books, visual arts and more strange clothing is paraded in front of the casual visitor and the villager.Yes that’s right there are people in the village of Appledore that have to go about their normal business in this strange and some might say hostile atmosphere. The villagers blend in as best they can and some even supply Chardonnay. The villagers though are becoming tired of the gangs malign influence. Young people have fled the village because they ..do n’t like art or Chardonnay and well, yes, there is the question of housing too. A trifling matter compared with the incessant noise created by readings from Angela Carter novels, the mess from a ceramics workshop or the filth from the remains of an injudiciously extra large latte. Surprisingly the lack of shelter is an issue for the villagers. You see the gangs have over the course of a couple of decades moved in. When I say moved in I mean just that. That’s right, every two up two down terraced fisherman’s cottage in Irsha or Bude Street is occupied by at least one gang member.There are also the villa ghettos in Staddon Street and Marine Parade.These areas are tagged by gangland symbolism. The turned up collar, the slim wrist watch and of course the charriot de jour are all the distinct markings of the clans.
Clearly there is trouble in paradise. Whilst on a bank holiday ice cream licking expedition (You hypocrite:Ed) I spotted the first signs of revulsion by the villagers. Of course previously there has been voiced some disquiet about developments to Richmond dock and now the Knapp but this is usually just infighting by a clique amongst the gangs sometimes known as the NIMBYs. The aforementioned sign is in fact the beautiful mural painted on the boarding to the former (Chardonnay supplier) Co-op. The mural displays a gang-banger lying prostrate on a shack whilst a villager and progeny dejectedly trudge away to a social housing provider.
Perhaps , just perhaps the gang bangers will look up from their i-pads for a minute and reflect on their effect on this community. They might ask themselves how they have come to belong here?
(Ed: Satire is not your thing This is a boarding blog for chissakes.)
Another mural that decorates the Appledore mini ramp. Who would have thought of hand planting foxes. Brilliant!
The remains of a lovely piece.
This guy does shapely ladies so well…