Islington Council U-turn over Finsbury pensioner’s popular murals

Resident Jo White collected 277 signatures against the councils policy of turning off central heatin

Resident Jo White collected 277 signatures against the councils policy of turning off central heating for five months of the year - Credit: Archant

Jo can keep art work after town hall agree not to paint over her six-week project

A pensioner who spent weeks lovingly painting the communal areas outside her council flat has been told the work can stay following a U-turn from Islington Council.

Jo White, 65, was told the council would paint over her stencilling designs of ducks, horses and tractors when the work was discovered by housing officers outside her Finsbury home in January.

Ms White, who lives at Turnpike House in Goswell Road, said she was told she might even face eviction if she painted the hall again, despite gaining approval from all of the residents using the 10th floor landing.

But following a letter from Islington South MP Emily Thornberry to the town hall, Ms White, who also spends several hours a week cleaning parts of the building, was told the designs could stay as the acrylic paint was deemed not to cause a fire hazard.

“I had a visit from them and they said they liked what I’ve done and that I can keep it all, as long as I can prove that all the red and white paint around the chute area is fire proof,” she said.

“I’m really pleased. I told the council that if they pained over it I would just do it again, but I don’t know if I would have as it took me about six weeks to do it all.

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“They’ve said that if I want to do any more work on my own I will have to tell them first, but I won’t bother as I know they will only say no.”

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