'Pretentious p**ck': Angry neighbour's bizarre rant over footpath chalk art

Ash Cant
·3-min read

A woman hoping to spread some joy to her community during Melbourne’s lockdown has been labelled a ‘pretentious p**ck’ by a neighbour.

Fiona Cracknell set up Cracknell Chalk Drawings, a public Facebook group, earlier this year to showcase her incredible chalk drawings on footpaths in her suburb.

“I started drawing for my beautiful 3 year old daughter, had no idea it would impact my local neighbourhood while in lockdown this much,” Ms Cracknell wrote on the page.

Fiona Cracknell's chalk drawings were meant to bring joy to her community. Source: Facebook/Cracknell Chalk Drawing
Fiona Cracknell's chalk drawings were meant to bring joy to her community. Source: Facebook/Cracknell Chalk Drawing

However, another Gladstone Park resident took offence to Ms Cracknell’s art and complained to council.

“Someone has complained to the Council about my chalk drawing. Calling me a pretentious p**ck and that I am graffitiing,” Ms Cracknell wrote on the Facebook page on Thursday.

“First of all I was doing to bringing joy to the community [sic], not cause drama and second, the Coucil loves it. For the first time in ages I have brought positive news to Gladstone Park.

“I cannot believe this! I am really upset and angry. All I wanted was to make people smile at a time they needed it the most.”

Ms Cracknell also shared photos of what appeared to be the complaint submitted to council.

The letter, addressed to Hume City Council and sent in anonymously, followed a phone call with council and called Ms Cracknell’s chalk work “destructive” graffiti.

“I’ve copied the letter to the pretentious p**cks at that house in the hope they will see this letter as a warning and cease their crap,” the letter says.

“They may also get it into their skulls that graffiti of council land is illegal. Placing the lives of locals at risk because of their desire to.”

The letter to council referred to the artist, Fiona Cracknell as a "pretentious prick". Source: Facebook/Cracknell Chalk Drawings
The letter to council referred to the artist, Fiona Cracknell as a "pretentious prick". Source: Facebook/Cracknell Chalk Drawings

The person who made the complaint questioned whether council would be liable for any injuries that may occur if someone was to slip on the chalk.

“Who do I sue? The pretentious p**cks or council?” the letter asks.

However, it appears council will not be taking action against Ms Cracknell’s art.

On the Cracknell Chalk Drawings Facebook group, Ms Cracknell shared a screenshot of what appears to be a post made by council.

“We’d like to let you know that we will not issue fines for chalk drawings on footpaths, or ask for them to be removed,” the post said.

Although Yahoo News Australia could not find this particular Facebook post, it does align with the statement issued to Seven News.

Fiona Cracknell shared what appears to be a Facebook post from the Hume City Council which said fines won't be issued, nor will the drawings be removed. Source: Facebook/Cracknell Chalk Drawings
Fiona Cracknell shared what appears to be a Facebook post from the Hume City Council which said fines won't be issued, nor will the drawings be removed. Source: Facebook/Cracknell Chalk Drawings

“Chalk messages and drawings on streets have been developed by children and adults alike during the COVID-19 pandemic, bringing hope and joy to Victorians during this difficult time,” the statement to Seven News said.

“Council will not issue any fines for these drawings or ask for them to be removed.”

Since Ms Cracknell shared the letter from the anonymous person taking offence to her art, the Facebook group has been flooded with words of encouragement.

“Just wanted to say thank you for brightening our days. Keep drawing, your work is wonderful,” one person wrote.

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