Frustrated residents and business owners have joined forces to clamp down on the graffiti epidemic which is “blighting” the city.

Business and Residents Against Tagging (Brat) says it will lobby the city council and Sussex Police to take “rapid and stronger action” on the issue of tagging in Brighton and Hove.

It has also encouraged the public to report tagging and taggers through its new website, with evidence being used to help the police take action against individuals.

Brat says it wants to support and lobby the council to clean up unwanted graffiti and monitor hotspots.

“Unauthorised graffiti and tagging are making our city look dirty and neglected to locals and visitors,” said a Brat spokesman.

“Our aim is not to remove the beautiful, commissioned street art for which Brighton is rightly famous. It is to help the authorities to finally clamp down on the illegal vandalism that is causing millions of pounds of damage to homes and business and is undermining the civic pride and standard of living of residents.”

The newly formed organisation is made up of business owners, artists, media professionals and other residents.

“We’re not serial malcontents or miseries,” said the spokesman.

“We are a diverse group of creative people who love our city and want to make it as attractive and welcoming as it once was.”

Councillor Tim Rowkins, the chairman of Brighton and Hove City Council’s environment committee, said councillors will be reviewing the council’s policy on graffiti management with “immediate effect”.

“We’re really keen to make a fresh start in terms of finding new ways to take effective action to tackle tagging in our city,” he said.

“We very much welcome the formation of this new group and look forward to working with them.

“We’re very open to new ideas and new energy that will help us deal with tagging better.

“With the active involvement of our residents as well I think we could really be on to something that could make a big difference.

“Residents can report tagging on or by calling our graffiti hotline on 01273 295063.”

The Brat website is up and running now at

A spokesman from Sussex Police said tackling the issue is key focus for the division and there is a dedicated graffiti lead within the neighbourhood policing team.

“Sussex Police understands the impact graffiti has on residents, businesses and the Brighton and Hove community as a whole,” a spokesman said.

“Our officers maintain visible patrols across the city and particularly in areas highlighted as being of particular concern.

“These officers work with the community to gather intelligence that allows us to identify areas most affected by graffiti to ensure our resources are targeted as effectively as possible.

“We also work closely with our partners in the community to share information and highlight repeat offenders who can be pursued and brought to justice.

“As a division, we are supporting the council's on-going, year-long programme of targeted action.

“Please report any crimes or concerns through the Sussex Police website, by calling 101 or dialling 999 if it is an emergency.”