Sydney’s tourism appeal

By | Category: Travel destinations, Travel rumblings

You might wonder what I was going to write about. The beaches, the Opera House, the harbour, the scenery – all of which are magnificent, are nothing compared to the memory I have of one day in the centre of Sydney. No this is a moan about a common sight that puts tourists – at least the ones I have spoken to, as well as me – off. Grafitti.

It seems to have increased since I was last here, a year ago. Yesterday I took six different trains around the suburbs. Every single carriage that I was in, without exception, was marred by someone who had scratched in the window glass some word or “design.” It is not unknown for visitors to unveil their cameras and take pictures through the windows. Doing that on these trains would just yield blurred and obscured memories. Painted graffiti also seems to be on the increase including high on a building that makes anyone wonder how it got there. Especially as it is surrounded by railway lines and powered cables.

What encourages these people? Is it due to the Banksy influence that graffiti has spread not only in Sydney but in other cities as well? Is it boredom or the excitement of possibly being caught? Whatever it is, it can put visitors off. But what can we do about it? The train service newsletter ran a story about graffiti, thanking volunteers for helping to clean it off. But what will deter people from doing it in the first place? How about long community service awards at weekends where offenders have to clean the graffiti off? How about putting graffiti all over their houses and windows so everyone can see who they are? How about getting them to be compulsory volunteers to show tourists around? And then trying to explain, when asked, why some idiots deface trains, buildings and monuments?

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