One of many examples of graffiti found in AylesburyOne of many examples of graffiti found in Aylesbury
One of many examples of graffiti found in Aylesbury

Pictures: Aylesbury resident of 50 years tells politicians the town never been in a worse state

Paul has lived in Aylesbury for half a century and is convinced the town has never been so badly neglected

An Aylesbury resident who has lived in the town for 50 years has raised alarm at the current state of the area.

Paul Sherley wrote to Bucks Council Leader, Councillor Martin Tett, and Aylesbury MP, Rob Butler, expressing his concern over his sense the town has been neglected.

His main issues were with the way the town centre’s features has been allowed to decline, the speed at which vandalism is dealt with, and temporary fixes carried out to deal with paving issues, which he believes are unsustainable.

During a 15-minute walk with his dog Paul took 28 photos to highlight his belief that the town is not being looked after.

This newspaper has selected nine of the 28 photos sent to Aylesbury’s leading politicians to flag up in a photo gallery which can be viewed below.

Paul found graffiti spray-painted over large stretches of the Aylesbury Arm of Grand Union Canal, he discovered further writing on the John Hampden statue in Market Square.

Also, where cobbles have worn away in the town centre by the Kings Head pub and in other places, Paul was distressed at the use of tarmac as a quick fix to repair the street.

He also took several pictures showing where a lot of the stone paving is starting to crumble.

Launched just four years earlier and as an area which accommodates some of Aylesbury’s most popular high-end restaurants, Paul now believes the area resembles nothing more than a “mess”.

Both the Aylesbury MP and council leader shared Paul’s disdain for the vandalism identified by the long term resident. Councillor Tett assured Paul, that the appropriate team would be contacted and the markings would be removed as soon as possible.

But Paul was disappointed that both responses he received addressed his concerns about vandalism without offering a solution to his larger issues regarding the general sense Aylesbury is a neglected town.

He told The Bucks Herald: “The responses are disappointing in that they only deal with one part of my letter, graffiti - the issues are much wider than that and I was hoping the council and MP could do more to help.

"For example, they mention nothing about the mess that is the Exchange , which was completed at great expense only a few years ago, and what they are doing to sort this out, infilling paving with tarmac, not repairing street lights and generally letting the town get more and more run down.

"It is like they have just chosen the bits of the letter they can easily comment on, and shift blame to others, and ignored the rest.”

Councillor Tett told Paul he had passed on his message about the graffiti to the council’s town centre team while mentioning that the graffiti by the canal was not a council responsibility, but something that Canals and Rivers Trust officials should clear. He said he would contact the body to make them aware of the problem.

Mr Butler told The Bucks Herald: “I completely understand Mr Sherley’s frustration – like him I am angry about the damage done to our town by vandals and thugs. I am pleased that the council is taking action to remove the graffiti, which is an eyesore that upsets many local residents.

“Having been on two litter picks in the past few weeks, I know only too well the harm caused by people dropping rubbish on the street, on verges or in parks.

"Aylesbury is a great town with even greater potential, which is why I continually make the case to ministers that levelling up funding should come to Aylesbury.”