Page last updated at 11:18 GMT, Sunday, 16 August 2009 12:18 UK

'Street art' removed by council

Melbourne Street drawings
Specialist equipment is being brought in to remove the drawings

"Street art" in a Devon city is to be removed after the local council said it was graffiti.

The colourful designs on Melbourne Street in Exeter were spotted during a routine patrol and reported to the city council.

The drawings were done by some adults and children who live nearby to brighten up the area.

However, council officials have classed the work as graffiti and said it had to be removed.

One woman, who did not want to be identified, told BBC News most of the street's residents believed the artwork was harmless and made people smile.

But council spokesman Mike Trim said not removing would send out the wrong message.

"There are some wonderful drawings, but of course it is graffiti as well," he told BBC News.

"If we were to leave it, where would it end? Could we be saying to people 'carte blanche - draw on all the streets?'."

Because of the type of paint used, specialised machinery is being brought in to avoid damaging the pavement surface.

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