Shops on Walton’s County Road given new urban look by local residents

Shop fronts in Liverpool that were looking somewhat drab have been given a new lease of life after a lick of paint by members of the community.

Walton residents have decided to inject a bit of colour into the sombre-looking shop shutters that line up along County Road.

The development has been organised through local community group, Love Walton CIC, who commissioned the work on the shutters out to Zap Graffiti in February this year.

Kieran Gorman, from Zap Graffiti, said: “We are a Liverpool-based art studio who have been promoting graffiti as a positive art form across the UK since 1995.

“It was great to be contacted by the community of Walton who thought this would brighten up their area and get our message out at the same time.“

Sitting in the shadow of Goodison Park, County Road is home to an eclectic range of independent shops, bars, and cafes and, of the 46 shutters that have been painted, each mural designed by the street artists as part of the scheme cleverly relates to what the business inside does.

Project coordinator Maureen Delahunty-Kehoe said: “We wanted something striking and visual that would really make an impact when you came down the road and the shops were shut.

“We were price-matched by Councillor Roy Gladden as part of the project, whereby the shops only had to pay for half of the materials needed to paint their shutters and they paid the rest.

“It was really nice to be able to have council backing, as it showed they believed in us as a project.”

county road
County Road, in Walton, received a new lease of life in the form of urban graffiti on shop shutters Pictures © Andrew Nuttall

This artistic scheme aims to bring back the life to the area and what some local residents are calling ‘a shopping area in decline’.

Walton resident, and keen shopper, Theresa Bloome said: “I think areas like Liverpool ONE have taken interest away from smaller, independent places like County Road.

“Hopefully these colourful and interesting pieces of art will give people something to talk about when they come to the area to shop.”

This isn’t the first time that street art has graced the L4 postcode, as the former Ethel Austin store it’s a host to an amazing mural of a woman with multi-coloured hair, painted by street artist Whoam Irony earlier this year.

Another resident Esther McBride, who lives just off County Road on Croyland Street, said: “I’ve lived on this street for quite a few years and I’ve definitely noticed a drop in the number of people coming here to shop.

“This new artwork isn’t going to be to everyone’s taste but it’s definitely something unique to the area and much better than plain old shop shutters.”

The shutters were only the start of Maureen’s big clean-up for the area, as she now plans to get the local schools involved in the building of a virtual garden on Hale Road in the next few weeks.

Ms. Delahunty-Kehoe said: “I decided to get the schools that were nearby involved in this clean-up so that the kids were aware of their surroundings and would ultimately have a bit of pride in their area, knowing that they can make a difference.”


 

Below picture gallery © Andrew Nuttall

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