Saturday, August 15, 2020

Millwall Murals and nearby street art

A stroll today around the area by The Den, starting with checking out the recently refreshed mural of Millwall FC legend Neil Harris, under the railway arch on Zampa Road SE16.  I featured the mural here way back in 2012, recently it has been looking run down and then was painted out earlier this year. But last month original artist wizywig restored it to its former glory (in fact it's bigger than the original).

Directly opposite is a new (June 2020) Millwall lion mural by prolific local signwriter/artist Lionel Stanhope - responsible for all those railway station names painted across South London. Unfortunately today there was a big van parked right in front of it so I had to use this image from Network Rail.

The club and the ground have a certain international reputation, attested to by the stickers from clubs/ultras from around the world to be found on nearby lampposts. Here's a few examples - on the left we have 'Working Boys Front' which I think is something to do with Torpedo Moscow. Underneath that is a classic Millwall 'No one likes us, we don't care' sticker, above a GKS Katowice (Poland) one. On  the right we have Norwegian team Løten Fotballklubb, above a 'Periferia Sud Livorno' seemingly from ultras associated with Italian team AS Livorno ('periferia sud' means something like 'South suburbs', kind of equivalent to 'South London'. 

Next to the Neil Harris mural there's a few stickers on the railway bridge sign. Next to something from reputedly extreme right wing stickerists 'Millwall Berserkers' (definitely not to be confused with 'Millwall anti-fascists') is one from Bayern Munich ultras,  like Livorno ultras known for their left wing sympathies. Their sticker adapts Karl Marx- 'Fussball proletariat vereinigt euch verbandsstrukturen zerschlagen' ('football proletariat unite against the association structures' which seems to refer to UEFA and other football authorities).  Also a sticker showing Margaret Thatcher with her celebrity friend Jimmy Saville and the word 'disnonce' (in lettering reminiscent of punk band Discharge's logo, go figure).

On the other side of Ilderton Road from the new Den, fans of another South London team have left their mark

The railway bridges and arches are an irresistible canvas for graffiti and street artists - 'refugees welcome' has been painted on that same bridge on Zampa Road (still visible today, though photo below was taken in March before the tree blocked out the view of the ground).

On Cold Blow Lane the ancient early 1970s T.Rex graffiti that was still visible back in 2008 is long gone, but new stuff goes up from time to time, the most recent being this topical Black Lives Matters/FTP image of a skeletal cop.

Meanwhile round the corner on John Williams Close, on the site of the old Den, mattress artists have been at work with these kissing fish:

(all photos taken by me, 15 August 2020 unless otherwise stated).

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