THE University of Hull has issued a formal apology to the people of Bradford after a graffiti campaign which left numerous historic buildings around Bradford city centre covered in pink chalk.
The graffiti, promoting clearing at the East Coast institution, was plastered around the city centre, including in Tyrrel Street, City Park, on Bradford and Keighley Magistrates Court and the Grade II listed former Natwest bank in Hustlergate.
The chalk adverts were put up on A-Level results day to encourage young people in the city to apply for a place at Hull, but the stunt backfired and was findly condemned as "outrageous" and "disrespectful", with Bradford Council considering prosecuting the university over the stunt.
David Richards, Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Research, Enterprise and Marketing at the University of Hull, said he was "truly sorry" about the graffiti.
He said: "We would like to apologise for the upset and inconvenience that has resulted from the chalk graphics displayed in the city, as part of our wider promotional activity.
"A few people contacted us last week to express concern and I want to assure you that we have taken this issue seriously.
"We are very sorry that what we intended as an eye-catching campaign has caused upset.
"We worked with an agency on the temporary chalk graphics and planned for them to be in place for 24 hours, and removed by the end of the day.
"We worked with Bradford Council on Thursday to understand and address their specific concerns and acted immediately on their requests. We will continue to work with the Council team to ensure everything is removed with due care.
"We are truly sorry for any upset caused."
Last Thursday, when the graffiti was put up around the city centre, a Bradford Council spokesperson said: “We have spoken to the people who carried this out and explained that spraying graffiti on buildings, including a listed building, and placing banners in the city centre is illegal.
“Cleaning the graffiti off has tied up limited Council resources which would be much better employed in other areas, and this behaviour shows disrespect for our public spaces which we take pride in keeping free of graffiti and fly-posting.
“Depending on how the University responds we will either take those responsible to court or issue a fine of £75 for each sign, plus the cost of cleaning up.
“Bradford is the youngest city in the UK which is why it is seen as an attractive recruiting area for other universities and colleges, but this is definitely not the way to go about it.”