A GRAFFITI project proposed for young people in Amesbury has been rejected by the town council.

The idea was put forward by the Neighbourhood Policing Tasking Group, with the aim of asking a professional artist to work with youngsters to try and cut criminal damage around the town.

The project would have taken place at Holders Road Pavilion, but nearby residents had objected to the idea of any more graffiti in the area.

Councillor Richard Crook said the project is definitely needed but should be based somewhere in the centre of the town.

"We can't just walk away from it, we have got to put our heads to it," he said.

"Summer is here and the holidays are coming - we need to do it sooner rather than later, even if it's just a few bits of boards put somewhere. We have to give it a try."

Inspector Martyn Sweett from Amesbury Police told a meeting of the town council the force is in contact with Stonehenge School about holding the project there, as they had completed a similar successful project in the past.

Cllr Andy Rhind-Tutt spoke out against the project. He said: "No matter how good an artist they are, graffiti looks awful to the naked eye. I don't agree with doing any of that in the town."

Cllr Margaret Strange agreed with Cllr Rhind-Tutt and said the sort of individuals who graffiti don't want to be watched by a professional, they do it in secret and then enjoy the satisfaction of knowing they've done it.

Cllr Fred Westmoreland was also against the idea and said you can't cure criminal damage this way.

"People who do damage will not be the ones taking advantage of the boards," he added.

"When someone commits criminal damage, that's an offence. I don't care how artistic it is."

The majority of councillors voted against giving the project their support.