Seventeen artists creating works on Margate buildings for ocean conservation campaign

Rise Up Residency art work in Vicarage Place by 'Hera' Photo Frank Leppard

Photos by Frank Leppard

Brilliant art works have started appearing on Margate buildings in a bid to raise awareness of ocean conservation and the issues caused by plastic in and around our coastline

Seventeen local and international artists are painting as part of the Rise Up Residency project which officially starts today (September 25) and runs to October 2, although some works have already been completed.

The project is spearheaded by Rise Up Clean Up and Margate-based, internationally-acclaimed artist Louis Masai. It will culminate in a series of free workshops for residents on October 1-2, with the aim to inspire the Margate community to reduce plastic use and respect the ocean.

Work by Louis Masai on the Kent Tec building Photo Frank Leppard

In the last two years, more than 3000kg of rubbish has been collected from Margate main sands, the majority of which is single use plastic and packaging.

‘Hera’ Photo Frank Leppard

Isle businesses have embraced the art-led-activism and have joined forces with residents as well as the artists to offer workshops and events during the first weekend of October to help everyone do their bit to reduce waste.

Photo Frank Leppard

Each installation has dedicated partners, ranging from climate NGOs such as Sea Shepherd, to sustainable  brands, including  NatraCare, a company producing eco-friendly product alternatives for periods, as well as a variety of local businesses and National Cultural Centre, People Dem Collective.

Work in Danesmead Terrace by ‘Dreph’ Photo Frank Leppard

Environmental and litter picking group Rise Up Clean Up Margate was founded by resident Amy Cook. She said: “We have embarked on a mission to clean up Margate’s beaches and protect our stunning local coastline, ocean and our native wildlife. However, just cleaning up what people leave behind isn’t enough. We need genuine systemic change that looks to eliminate the problem at the source.

Work at Drapers Mill by Lily Mixe Photo Frank Leppard

“My hope is that the Rise Up Residency, leads to changes in policy and actions that can help to usher in an era where Margate becomes single-use plastic free.

“Beyond that, I hope other seaside towns will follow suit and together we can help to bring about real change and preserve our gorgeous coastline for generations to come.”

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Works that can already be seen include that of lead artist Louis Masai on the Kent Tec building in Northdown Road and works by Lily Mixe at Drapers Mill, Hera -aka Jasmin Siddiqui’ – in Vicarage Place and Neequaye Dreph Dsane at Danesmead Terrace. Work has also started on a mural in Crescent Road, opposite Nayland Rock, by artist Smug in partnership with the British Divers Marine Life Rescue organisation.

Find information and the mural map at

Find details for the workshops at


    • Has TDC granted planning consent ?

      Other people painting or decorating the outside of their houses have faced enforcement action.

      Whilst this ”artwork” is supposed to be drawing attention to the environment, the perpetrators have chosen to ignore the pollution they are creating with the spray cans and the diesel engines in the cherry pickers.

      Please do not tell me that the spray cans now contain environmentally friendly propellants because there is a pic of a guy using one whilst wearing an industrial grade mask ! ! !

      • “Please do not tell me that the spray cans now contain environmentally friendly propellants because there is a pic of a guy using one whilst wearing an industrial grade mask ! ! !”

        I’ll tell you just that. The masks are to prevent inhalation of the carrier solvent, which dissipates into nothing in the air over time, you know, thanks to the laws of physics and gas transfer. 🙂 Stay salty though.

  1. Looks like Graffiti. While a noble cause I would like this group, the idiots setting fire to themselves at tennis matches, those laying in roads & stopping people getting to hospital etc & others like it to tell us how making Thanet plastic free has any real bearing on global warming with the US, China, Russia etc pumping out the majority of the crap that is causing the problems. Should they not be thinking bigger?

  2. anywhere else this would be called vandalism ! how do they get away with it ? i blame tracey emin for this starting this crap off

  3. More DFL nonsense. Trying to turn Thanet into Croydon. Looks crap. What happens when the local graffiti artists absolutely muller these? Will they be repainted? Give it a week.

  4. Seriously all this money being thrown at thanet is it making a difference ?

    It might be helping the small percentage of arty people but not the majority of thanet people.

    I think alot of people think thanet is only a few hundreds yard around the Turner Centre.

  5. What happens in a few months ,when the weather takes toll on these graffiti pictures ,who pays to clean up the walls ,the artists, the owners,because it will cost ,some quite a few bob, to clean these sites, never local council grants will cover that,because the owners will plead poverty

  6. There seems to be a large serving of sour grapes in this comment feed. I think it looks great, something bright and colourful and to draw attention to the plastic problem, goodness knows the sands suffer from left rubbish over summer.

    Places and times change isn’t it better to look into a positive future?

  7. All those who are constantly critical. Feel free to start “keep Thanet sh*t” project. Raise the funds on the strength of your ideas and try them deliver them…..Or just sit in your pants on your sofa criticising everyone else’s effort to drive some change and improve things.

    • By all means launch a campaign to make Thanet unsh*te, but it doesn’t need lurid murals on historic building to do it – no more than we need “art” displays on historic seaside shelters… and who exactly is funding all this, and who will ensure that these are kept pristine and not allowed to just fade and peel? Those behind the “art box” promised to install new art exhibitions every 3 weeks, but go and look at ot now – a mere 10 months later!

    • Exactly this. People are very quick to complain, to deride and generally be nasty about drives to improve an area as it doesn’t fit with their world view.

      What are you all doing to improve and regenerate Margate? What are your ideas?

      • My ideas? Look at what others are doing is my suggestion. Birchington/Minnis Bay volunteers have put a lot of time, money and effort in restoring shelters (ditto in Ramsgate), while the Margate ones are allowed to rot while locals grafitti walls instead. And really, do you for one moment think litterers will look at murals and use bins instead???

        • The margate shelters are allegedly allowed to rot because they’re allegedly festering with old lead based paint (srsly, go buy a test kit from brewers and peel a few layers back till you get to the “council green” and share your results)…and as such, are allegedly too costly to safely renovate. Those minnis shelters should have been demolished, stripped of paint offsite by professional lead paint removal services and then reinstalled. NOT done by volunteers without a care for H&S or the local environment/dogs.

    • The old bakehouse never looked “sh*te” in the first place, but who is going to maintain these oncethey start fading and peeling?

      Just last December, we were were promised by (the heavily-funded) people being Cliftonville’s “art box” that it would have new displays every 3 weeks, but have you seen the state of it now?! I can see exactly the same happening to these.

      • “They WERE taken away and stripped by a professional company. Do try harder with your research.”

        Not the ones I saw being sanded down in situ, near minnis playground, they weren’t.

    • Unfortunately, there is a certain type of person who still believe that the solution to everything in Thanet is to take it back to the 70s.
      They can’t accept that a vast majority of people have moved on from the days where people were entertained by a stick of rock, a kiss me quick hate, a racist comedian or a cuddle from Jimmy Saville.

  8. Given the furore about the treatment of the ex planning officers house in ramsgate last year, do these installations have planning permission? Would it not have been better for the groups involved to have rented billboards on which to display? Is there a commitment in place to either maintain the murals or reinstate the original wall finishes ?
    The comment from Adam Lucy is almost comical in respect of world views and improvement, as it basically says that those that disagree are unworthy of opinion in contrast to the project creators.

    • Please tell me LC where I said those that disagree are unworthy of opinion. You are attempting to mold what I said to fit your narrative. Everybody is entitled to their opinion, to express their opinion in all its glory as many have done on this thread.

      Once again I will ask, what are your ideas for improvement? How do you plan to address the continuing mismanagement of TDC, how do you plan to improve Margate?

      We can all moan and gripe and express our negative opinions regarding initiatives but what are we offering in place?

      • The part where you say “and doesn’t fit their world view” to me implies that the view that supports the murals is superior to one that doesn’t. My interpretation.

        As to putting thanets ills right. A pure back to basics strategy. ( refuse and rubbish collection, public toilets, stopping the deterioration of TDCs assets ( actually improving them is another matter), adoption by the various views in the council of a 10 year plan thats to be implemented by whoever is in the big seat, rather than the endless about turns everytime we get a change of party(, they can tinker round the edges to show how wonderful they are or are not.)Stop giving away what little the area has left away. Be open and honest about the cost of decisions that lie hidden on the books. Stop pandering endlessly to the creative sector, that surely has had enough support and now has to sink or swim on its own merits and abilities.
        Accept that the council is effectively bankrupt and has little it can really do, on the back of that look at the assets it has , decide which are both worth and affordable to retain, sell the rest off on the open market to attain best value and ringfence those funds for the assets retained.
        Make concerted efforts with the police to deal with the drug problem that is threatening to overrun thanet if left unchallenged.
        Any resources left to be targeted at attracting businesse to the isle that will actually provide jobs.

        • LC I appreciate the comprehensive response you have given me and I can 100% agree with you on a number of points you have mentioned. Refuse and rubbish collection, accessible and clean toilets and the stopping the deterioration of valuable assets are very important. I also agree with your concern over the drug and alcohol addiction issues which regularly blight the high street and town centre in Margate. In general I agree that TDC need a comprehensive strategy to maintain investment momentum and to move purely away from the creative base as diversity will improve the local economies resiliance to economic shock.

          Unfortunately TDC has neither the finances nor the drive and will to pull it out of the bag. The way change will come about is most likely through people dragging them along.

  9. They look nice. Colourful. The walls would be tatty and peeling anyway. Anything to brighten up the old place. I particularly like the one of the seal with big soulful eyes. I know it looks a bit “My little pony” but this is a seaside place, meant to be a bit garish and attractive to children.
    And I am always amazed at how the artists can draw so accurately on such a huge scale. A real skill.

    • “the seal one really gets on my wick”

      Then the art has had the desired reaction. Its made you stop and think. Its weird you’d get mad at inanimate objects that can’t physically or mentally hurt you though. You, do you.

  10. If you follow the link to the rise up page, there’s a map of the various mural locations, when you tap on one of them you get an image of a different work by the same artist, when you compare these previous works to those in the article , i can’t help but think we’ve ended up with the poundshop art. The other depictions are so much more vibrant and intereting.

  11. What a mess!
    Everyone knows about plastic in the sea by now anyway.Should have cleaned up all the dreadful graffiti in the area instead.

    • They’re usually recycled by the shops the artists buy them from. Most of them use the same propellant febreze uses. Compressed o2/nitrogen.

  12. If these had been sprayed on walls in certain countries around the world ,it would be called propaganda,indoctrination,

  13. The xenophobia and “little man syndrome” posturing shown by Kim Jong-un feels very similar to some of the more vile small minded cretins who comment on here!

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