Two popular LGBTQ+ murals in Manchester’s gay village were defaced with homophobic graffiti on Saturday evening (26 June).
A mural of Drag Race UK star Divina de Campo was targeted, as well as one with World War II code breaker Alan Turning and drag legend Foo Foo Lammar.
The taggers wrote “666” and “dirty bastards” on the acclaimed pieces of artwork.
Soon after the graffiti was discovered, Manchester citizens and officials took to social media to express their disappointment and anger.
Jon-Connor Lyons, a city centre councillor representing Piccadilly Ward, revealed that he would be reporting the incident to the authorities.
“Absolutely disgusting to hear that someone has vandalised our Gay Village with homophobic language, which is specifically targeting our LGBTQ+ community,” he said.
“They are nothing but cowards. We are a tolerant city and Mancunians won’t stand for this. We’ll be speaking with GMP.”
Absolutely disgusted to hear that someone has vandalised our Gay Village with homophobic language, which is specifically targeting our LGBTQ+ community. They are nothing but cowards. We are a tolerant city and Mancunians won’t stand for this. We’ll be speaking with GMP. pic.twitter.com/F4q9rXPjYP
— Cllr Jon-Connor Lyons 🐝🌈 (@JonConnorLyons) June 26, 2021
In an interview with Manchester Evening News, Divina opened up the situation and stated that she’s not taking the vandalism to heart.
“Of course when I first heard it happened, I felt some kind of way but is it an attack on me personally? No, it’s not,” she said.
“It’s bigger and more important than that. They don’t know who I am so it’s not an attack on me personally, but it is an attack on LGBT+ people.
“For me, it just re-energises that argument for why there is still a need for Pride. People will often go on about how we don’t need Pride anymore or ask why isn’t there a straight pride but, it’s actually things like this that highlight there’s still a need for it.”
Carl Austin-Behan, the LGBTQ+ advisor to Mayor Andy Burnham, revealed that the artists of the defaced murals have been contacted to fix the pieces.
“It might need to be an initial touch up initially and maybe we need to look at what needs to be done to restore both pieces of artwork properly and correctly,” he said.
Austin-Behan also praised the community’s comrade and reliance since the homophobic graffiti was discovered.
“It shows the fact that Manchester’s LGBT+ community and allies have come together to make sure we can’t tolerate this sort of behaviour,” he said.