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John Hegley writes poem for campaign to save ROA graffiti rabbit in Hackney Road

PUBLISHED: 16:11 05 November 2010

Managing director Julia Craik (centre) stands with musicians from Strummerville charity The Premises workers in objection to Hackney council's threat to remove ROA's graffitti rabbit on Hackney Rd, 26th October 2010

Managing director Julia Craik (centre) stands with musicians from Strummerville charity The Premises workers in objection to Hackney council's threat to remove ROA's graffitti rabbit on Hackney Rd, 26th October 2010

Olivia Harris, (+44) 7881 810 878, www.oliviaharrisphotos.com

Poet among supporters of 12-foot-tall piece of street art

John Hegley

Poet John Hegley has added his voice to the growing campaign to save Hackney’s giant graffiti rabbit from extinction.

The Newington Green-born performer has written a poem in support of the Hackney Road mural by world renowned street artist ROA, after Hackney Council ordered its removal.

He wrote:

“This rabbit

can we grabbit?

If it disappears

it won’t be into a hat.

Let us hope that

Hackney Council has ears.”

More than 2,000 people have signed an online petition calling on town hall chiefs not to destroy the 12-foot-tall painting on the wall of The Premises Studios and Café.

The recording studios’ bosses went on the warpath after they were told to “obliterate” the artwork or apply for planning permission. Otherwise, council workers would paint over the wall and send them the bill.

They have repeatedly refused the council’s demands, and instead called for a complete review of the borough’s policy on graffiti.

“John wrote the poem off the cuff,” said managing director Julia Craik.

“I have known him for years. He has visited the studios and we had a party a while back and he performed.

“We are trying to get publicity for the rabbit because we are trying to save to the rabbit.”

A council spokeswoman said: “Throughout this entire process, we have made every effort to keep the owners informed about the need to seek planning permission and how they can do that. We continue to work with all the concerned parties to try and resolve this matter and will take no further action while we try to find a solution that satisfies all those involved.”


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