Give Peas a Second Chance
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For more than two decades the slogan 'Give Peas A Chance' has been emblazoned on Chalfont Viaduct over the M25, a comforting and iconic landmark to many as a sign of journeys nearly at an end, to others of journeys just beginning. That landmark has recently been defaced, with the word "Peas" replaced with "Helch"
We, the undersigned, would like the original "Peas" tag to be reinstated, and a protection order placed both on the bridge and on the graffiti message. We believe it is an iconic part of modern British history.
The bridge itself, constructed between 1902 and 1906, of blue/black engineering brick with decorative brickwork, is "unique in being the only brick built bridge on this stretch of the M25 and is a local landmark for road users", according to a 2009 Historic Building Recording by Oxford Archaeology.
That report goes on to mention Peas, saying: "The south facing elevation has large painted graffiti on the parapet wall over the three westernmost arches. This has been painted in two stages, the first being the the word 'PEAS' in stylised capitals. Later the word 'GIVE' has been added in front of the 'PEAS' and 'A CHANCE' has been added after. This later graffiti is less stylised although there is an attempt to match the style used on 'PEAS' and the paint used has weathered and run in places.
"'PEAS' is the tag of a London graffiti artist and his tag can been seen in many other locations, particularly on bridges. The additional text changing the graffiti to read 'GIVE PEAS A CHANCE' is thought to refer to his continual arrests. The common misinterpretation of the inscription makes bridge a interesting landmark to users of the M25."
Not only did the graffiti make an interesting landmark, it has come to be a meaningful part of many people's lives.
The administrator of the 'BRING BACK - Give Peas A Chance - Bridge over M25' Facebook Group, who did not wish to be named, told the BBC: "It's a sign of being nearly home. It's a sign of family. People have been tagging sisters and brothers on the group and saying and 'can you believe this has happened?' and the response is 'oh my goodness this is devastating'."
The group has gained more than 8000 followers in just three days.
Minister, please give Peas a second chance, reinstate the graffiti, and protect the bridge as a British landmark.
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