Published: 11:00, 04 February 2016
| Updated: 11:07, 04 February 2016
A petition has been launched to stop the Red Sands forts being painted.
KentOnline exclusively revealed last week how a team of street artists hope to spraypaint the forts off the Herne Bay and Whitstable coast in June.
But the proposals have received backlash from a number of residents – and a petition has now been launched to stop it.
Campaigner Ian Hope said: “I feel this is disrespectful to our heritage and should be stopped in its tracks.
“Other ways need to found to raise the profile of the forts and raise capital to restore them properly.
“Covering the forts in this sort of art will not help the image of them and will actually discourage people from supporting the forts.”
Street artist Tristan Eaton, from Los Angeles, announced his plans last week.
The Painted Oceans project – which has been five years in the making – would be filmed from start-to-finish by a documentary team.
Mr Eaton said last week: “Painting murals on the Red Sands Sea Forts pays homage to their beautiful history and almost gives them the parade they deserved, but never got, for their service.
“I feel this is disrespectful to our heritage and should be stopped in its tracks..." - Ian Hope
“These forts are a timeless symbol of resistance.
“Whether fighting the tyranny of the Nazis during the Second World War, or fighting censorship in their Pirate Radio days in the 1960s – they’ve always been on the frontline of defence against oppression.
“This makes them a perfect icon for the spirit of the street art and graffiti movement, and I think it’s important share their story with a new generation.”
The petition had reached 155 supporters.
Electrical engineer Martin Roy, from Whitstable, added his criticism of the plans last week.
He said: “I think they should be left as they are.
“There’s a place for graffiti art and I don’t think it’s out there.
“The forts are a memorial for the fallen of the Second World War.
“After a winter being lashed by the weather there’s going to be half washed off paint out there and it’s going to look a mess.”
Robin Adcroft – chairman of the Project Redsand Trust, which has custodianship of the forts – says negotiations are still ongoing between the trust and Mr Eaton.
He added that the artwork project “is not yet set in stone”.