Is this a new Banksy in Harrogate?

The 'Banksy' graffiti in Bilton, Harrogate.
The 'Banksy' graffiti in Bilton, Harrogate.

Has Banksy entered the debate over Harrogate traffic congestion and come out against a possible new relief road near Nidd Gorge?

That's the question all of Harrogate is asking after a new piece of artwork appeared near Bilton in Harrogate suddenly.

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The image of a young deer has certainly been done in the style of the world famous, politically-conscious graffiti artist and it clearly suggests Banksy - or whoever created it - knows the area and the current fierce debate triggered by North Yorkshire County Council's public consultation over ideas to tackle traffic congestion.

The beautiful wilderness area around Bilton and Nidd Gorge was one part of the royal hunting-ground in the ancient forest of Knaresborough.

Award-winning Harrogate-based nature writer Rob Cowen says deer can, in fact, still be seen in the same nature spot even today.

Campaigners against the idea of a new relief road from Bilton past Nidd Gorge to Forest Lane say it's highly unlikely the art work is a genuine Banksy but it is still getting a lot of attention anyway.

For anyone who would like to check out the 'Banksy', here's simple directions - go to Pecketts Way, head to the bottom of Knox Lane, then right along the footpath.
It's near the sewage works, exactly where the road would go!

A real Banksy turned up in Hull recently and there have been fake Banksy scares in Harrogate before.

In 2014 it was revealed that stencil graffiti of a rat in Harrogate town centre on a wall between Kings Road and Back Cheltenham Mount was actually the work of a local artist, not Banksy.

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