GRAFFITI: A shed at Foreshore Park was hit by vandals this week during a pro-Supercars spray painting spree. East End residents have described the attack as an ongoing campaign. IN what residents regard as an act of retaliation, Newcastle’s East End has been hit with pro-Supercars graffiti.
Last Sundayit was discovered that vandals had spray-painted the historic United Services Club in Watt Street with anti-Supercars graffiti. In the days since there have beenreports of vandalism attacks on the East End in multiple locations.
The Newcastle 500 Supercars Australia event is due to be held in the East End of Newcastle in November. The event has been met with strong opposition from many residents living trackside.
The most recent act of vandalism wasdiscovered on Thursday when a wall at the heritage significant Joy Cummings Centre in Scott Street was emblazoned with “East Enderz love V8 Benderz”.
Pro-Supercar graffiti has also been discovered in Telford Street, Nobbys Road, Zaara Street, Fort Drive, Parnell Place, Foreshore Park and the lane-way between Scott and Alfred streets, according to residents.
East End resident Cath Whelan allegedthe vandalism was part of an ongoing campaign “bysome pro-V8 race supporters to harass the East End community”.
“We are being unfairly targeted for daring to question the location of this motor race through our suburban streets,” she said.
“We can only hope that the perpetrators are caught red-handed soon.”
Newcastle East End Residents Group secretary Joan Browning said her group was careful to operate within the law to express its opposition to the location of the race.
“We are doing our best to get our point across legally,” she said. “Any defacing of anybody’s property is unjustified, it’s illegal and it’s wrong.”
Meanwhile, Supercars can expect a call fromCessnock City Council. The council said itwanted to take full advantage of the Newcastle 500 to “show off the Hunter Valley wine country to the influx of spectators the V8 Supercars event is sure to attract”.
Cessnock City Councillor Jay Suvaal said the race was an opportunity for the tourism industry and it would be calling Supercars to invite the motor racing team to visit the local government area.
“We know this event is going to be absolutely huge, attracting thousands of people from across Australia,” Cr Suvaal said.
“What a fantastic chance to showcase our region and promote ourselves as a must see and do during people’s visit.”
Cessnock City Council and Hunter Valley Wine and Tourism Alliance will work alongside local accommodation, transport and tourism operators to promote Hunter Valley wine country as the place to stay for those travelling to watch the race.
Cessnock Mayor Bob Pynsent supports the plan.
“[We] could reap real reward for our tourism operators and tourism industry now and into the future,”Cr Pynsent said.