A well-known Thanet campaigner has published on his blog that “It was me what done it!” after the Dickens House Museum in Victoria Parade, Broadstairs was covered in graffiti. Ian Driver upload photos of him writing on its wall over the weekend, calling Charles Dickens a racist.
He wrote on his blog that “Just in case you hadn’t already guessed, I was responsible for the spate a graffiti in Broadstairs and Ramsgate on Saturday night (27 June). The graffiti targeted Broadstairs and St Peter’s Town Council offices at Pierremont Hall , the office of the Broadstairs Folk Week, the Thanet Council owned Dickens Museum, the box protecting the controversial Uncle Mack memorial plaque in Broadstairs and 2 street signs in Broadstairs and Ramsgate”.
Ian Driver has been a campaigner in Ramsgate and Broadstairs for many years and is currently under police investigation for spray painting the protective box covering the Uncle Mack memorial in Broadstairs, following a Black Lives Matter demonstration on 13th June.
He claims that his actions are provoked by Broadstairs Town Council decision of 24th June to retain the Uncle Mack memorial in the town. He claims that “Peaceful direct action, such as graffiti, the destruction and defacing of offensive statues and memorials has always been, and always will be, a legitimate part of protest”.
Sadly, grafitti may be a ‘part of protest’ but it is doubtful that it can be called legitimate, as it does not conform to the laws of the UK. Whilst his actions are peaceful, which is a bonus during these times, the residents of these two Kent towns will hope that he will turn to alternatives, such as banners and posters as his preferred method of political expression.