Colin Everett, Chief Executive Officer of Flintshire County Council has stepped in and superseded David Heggarty, Head of Regeneration in the on-going battle to turn The Duke of Lancaster at Llanerch-y-Mor into the largest open air art gallery in the UK.

In June 2012, Flintshire County Council maintained that the project was totally unviable due to restricted access to the site, and in particular the inability of the emergency vehicles to cross the nearby Glan-y-Don Bridge in Mostyn. DuDug has since commissioned 13 huge murals on the ship by world renowned artists such as Dank, FinDac and SpaceHop.

Mr. Everett’s involvement has terminated with what he considers to be “a definitive position statement”, however, DuDug have today released to him and the press their own true and factual account.

Over the past 12 months, DuDug have pulled together information from a number of easily accessible sources and believe that access to the dock by the emergency services should never have been quoted as an issue towards regeneration as they have a statutory right to use the bridge and the gross vehicle weight of a Fire Engine is not a Health and Safety Issue. This has been confirmed in writing by Network Rail.

DuDug are now hopeful that the council may finally put away their historical objections and provide the project with the goodwill they require to achieve their ambitions.

DuDug Project Director Maurice Blunt said of this recent development “We are really hopeful that our research will allow the council to set aside the historical objections and work with us to bring a much needed tourist attraction inNorth Wales. In keeping with the Council Motto of ‘The Best Shield is Justice’ we have called upon Mr. Everett to come forward with some proposals of his own to help us”

The owners of the ship have had a series of well documented legal battles with the council in relation to their operation of the ship and site since they first docked The Duke there in 1979 and it would appear that there is still great resistance from the council to support any venture involving The Duke of Lancaster.

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After 12 months of attempting to extract a definitive statement from the Head of Regeneration (ironically about regeneration), apparently the questions we asked were ACTUALLY too difficult, or at least the answers were too sensitive to put in writing.

We have been told from his boss not to involve him anymore. The Leader, “Mr. Council” himself has stepped in and has taken the reins.

Let’s hope for the sake of transparency he not only does the right thing, but also abides by his own 10 day deadline for a response.

Mr. Council’s Customer Care Policy Countdown below.

Aaron Shotton Flintshire County Council

Mr Council’s Courtesy Countdown…


Random Vs Black Duke


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RANDOM, AKA The Flintshire Banksy has answered the call and joined The DuDug Crew creating a striking image on the side of The Duke of Lancaster.

Earlier this year, DuDug put out a call to arms to RANDOM offering the chance to leave his mark on the beached cruise liner.

Maurice Blunt, Project Director “DuDug has followed the work of RANDOM for some time now and we love the way RANDOM Captures the history of this area in his images and the air of mystery which surrounds his work”

“We were delighted when RANDOM answered our call and over the past month he has worked to bring his piece to life and we are delighted to unveil the latest artwork in a series of work that aims to turn The Duke of Lancaster into the largest open air art gallery in the UK”

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The piece entitled “POINT OF AYR” is another piece by RANDOM paying homage to the forgotten working class heroes of the area, The Point of Ayr Miners. This joins a number of similar pieces around Flintshire including “The Courtaulds Girls”, “The Steelworker” and “The Fishermen”.

RANDOM himself explains “I am interested in the history of the working man and woman, it is I believe a history which has been marginalised over time”

“Whilst millions are spent on maintaining and restoring stately homes and grand houses, very little is spent on preserving the working and living conditions of the common man”

“In fact, great effort is put into beautifying the nation’s industrial heritage; take for example the parks and shopping centres now built over the closed pitheads and factories all over the country. This is why I choose to paint pictures which remind the viewer of the people whose sweat and labour built the country in which we now live.”

DuDug feel the same way about The Duke of Lancaster as the local council seems content with sitting back and ignore the pleas from many groups to get them to work with owners to secure a meaningful future for the ship, a future which is doomed without the goodwill of the council.

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Maurice continues; “The Council continue to put forward claims that are simply untrue. The most startling of which is, they state, Glan-y-Don bridge, which takes loads in excess of 30 tonnes on a daily basis, is not strong enough to support a 12 tonne fire engine if emergency access was ever required on the ship’s dock. This is blatant discrimination.

“We have repeatedly asked the Council’s Head of Regeneration to justify his claim. We even asked the important questions on a 6 x 4 ft post card but now unfortunately it seems Dudug are shamefully being ignored as we haven’t received a response from our last two correspondences”

The owners of the ship have had a series of well documented legal battles with the council about their plans for the ship, since they first docked the Duke there in the 1970s.


The Shield of Justice


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Flinshire County Council’s Motto on their crest of arms reads “The Best Shield is Justice.”

Urban Artist Tommy Graham releases an artwork with us based on Mr Council’s motto, called “The Shield of Justice“ and explains his thoughts about that…

“According to the motto of Flintshire County Council, “The Best Shield, Is Justice”. Justice is apparently the single finest tool available when trying to shield yourself from… something. It doesn’t say what. Ambiguity is ever the friend of the motto. Take for example Nike’s “Just Do It” (it doesn’t say what it is) or Burger Kings “Have It Your Way” (which I always think should be preceded by “Fine,” and followed by “Knob head.”) or in this case “The Best Shield Is Justice”. Mottos are vague things generally.

It’s not true of course. The best shield is not justice. Nope. Not even close. No, the best shield is – in fact – a shield. A type of personal armour, meant to intercept attacks either by stopping a projectile or redirecting a hit from a sword or a mace or some other such unpleasant stabby/smashy thing. That’s what it says on wikipedia anyway, sort of. The best type of shield, is a very big shield. Preferably made of something lightweight and durable.

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Gladiators used shields made of Iron. Knights in medieval times liked shields made of steel and peasants tears. These types of shields are fantastically useful when someone’s swinging a flail or a club at you, as they have a tendency of stopping you having your face caved in. Which can be a wholly unpleasant experience if you’re not used to it. Shields are excellent when trying to avoid the inevitable drawback of blunt force trauma. I’m going on record now as saying that no one, when faced with some charging lunatic swinging a battle axe, would rely on justice as a means of keeping hold of all their limbs. Not twice anyway.

The main drawback of justice as a shield, as far as i can tell, is that justice is an abstract concept. And as such, does little to dissuade physical objects from their intended target. This doesn’t just apply to justice of course. Most abstract concepts are rubbish at raining on momentums parade. This is why no one has ever stubbed their toe on deja vu, or slammed their car head long into a calorie controlled diet. Justice as a shield, is -I would argue- cack.

There’s a concept of justice that gets banded around now-a-days, of ‘universal justice’. ‘Karma’ some people call it, when they want to oversimplify a concept in hinduism, or reference a T.V show that used to be on channel 4 starring Jason Lee and the fat guy from ‘American History X’. The basic principle, as its used today is that if you do pleasant, generally lovely things, all kinds of squishy huggy lovely goodness will come back to you. But should you feel the need to act like an arsehole, then watch out, because all manner of horrible and unpleasant things will befall you, and on your own head be it. And thus balance and universal justice is maintained. The problem with this of course, is it’s complete bollocks. Terrible things are constantly happening to good people, while some of the most odious shit bags to ever walk the planet spend their time laughing, quaffing virgins blood and generally rolling around in the fruits of others misery. I imagine. Something like that anyway. My point is that this is not at all how the world works.

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“But I eat a strictly vegan diet” pleads the Antelope.

“Sorry mate, I don’t speak dear” replies the Tiger. Most likely followed by “Nom nom nom nom”.

Again in this case, the best shield is not justice.

BUT Flintshire County Council maybe didn’t have literal shields or universal justice in mind when they wrote their motto. No, they were probably speaking in metaphor. Now, metaphorical shields are exactly as effective as abstract concepts when in comes to keeping your cranium fracture free. By which, I mean that they aren’t. But, it works in regards to that whole shield/justice thing, semantically at least. So the best metaphorical shield in regards to injustice, is in fact justice. In this instance the best shield is justice. Ok, thats fine. Except… its not, again. Because for this to be true we would have to believe that the concept of ‘Justice’, at least in a legal sense, is infallible. It has to be infallible, otherwise it isn’t the best shield. I didn’t make the rules here dear reader, so don’t think me a pedant at this point. This isn’t my fault, this is the real world getting in the way again. Bloody real world, it’s forever doing that, have you noticed? Anyway…

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The problem is, that justice as a concept is subjective. And tricky. And malleable, if you’ve got the money, or the influence or the sheer downright where with all to find the legal loopholes or skeletons in the right persons cupboard or… something. I dunno. I’m basing this largely on films I’ve seen and Grand Theft Auto, so don’t take this for gospel. But look, there’s loads of examples of supposed ‘justice’ thats anything but. Lets not kid ourselves. I should probably site examples, but instead I’ll use a different tact, are you ready? Ok, watch. Here’s a question for you, have you ever heard the term ‘a miscarriage of justice’? You have? Good. Well there you are then. We’re all familiar with the term and so I’m assuming we’re all familiar with what it means. Now, there are loads of reasons why a miscarriage of justice can occur, nepotism, bureaucracy, them pesky legal loop holes or whatever, like i said, I’m largely basing this on video games and stuff. My point is that given the right set of circumstances, the legal system or ‘Justice’  is as fallible and clunky as any other institution run by human beings. Little pudgy funsters of self interest that we are. So even in metaphor the best shield is not justice.

From what I understand Flintshire County Councils approach to the Duke of Lancaster, some might say their motto should be “The best shield is irrelevant, fuck you and the ship you rode in on”, or the “The Best shield is… we bloody hate your ship, we do”. Or perhaps they could forgo the the shield bit entirely and instead opt for simply “Skeletor, he had the right idea.” But that last one would be difficult to translate into latin.

In conclusion, I would suggest that a better motto would be “the best shield is money, connections and a favourable set of circumstances, based around the inherently flawed nature all human beings”. Or “the best shield is some sort of durable and lightweight carbon nano tube/kevlar polymer”. I Know neither of these suggestions scan very well, but they’re both better than Justice. Because the best shield is not Justice.”

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To buy “The Shield of Justice” Artwork by Tommy Graham click here

  • Limited to 50 only
  • Hand-signed by Tommy Graham
  • High Quality 280gsm Canvas
  • 26″ wide x 30″ high (inches)
  • Professionally Mounted on 1.5″ stretcher bars
  • Ready to Hang

Click here for the Tommy Graham Art website