Andy Capp cartoon strip mural painted on Headland promenade for Hartlepool fisherman's birthday

A large Andy Capp mural has been painted on the Headland to help a Hartlepool fisherman celebrate his birthday.

By Mark Payne
Saturday, 14th August 2021, 4:45 am
Updated Monday, 16th August 2021, 11:17 am
The Andy Capp mural has been painted on Derek Harrison's Headland building as a birthday present from his wife.
The Andy Capp mural has been painted on Derek Harrison's Headland building as a birthday present from his wife.

Community artist Lewis Durham, who is dedicated to brightening up the area with public works of art, painted an Andy comic strip on the side of a storage building on the promenade for fisherman Derek Harrison.

It is a present from his wife, Denise Harrison, for Derek’s upcoming 76th birthday on August 24.

The colourful work of art has received a great response from passers-by and Derek called it “marvellous”.

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The mural was done in a day by community artist Lewis Durham of Durham Spray Paints.

Appropriately, it features lovable rogue Andy fishing with a rod and asking wife Flo what she is going to cook with the fish he expects to catch.

She replies some nice crispy chips before her final quip: “I’d best buy some fish too.”

The building belongs to Derek and his two lifelong friends Robert Holman and Alan Cook who fish on their 23ft boat The Three Lads.

He said: “I tidied it up and said it would look nice with an Andy Capp cartoon on it.

Artist Lewis also painted this mural of Hartlepool's former Elephant Rock on the side of The Pot House pub on the Headland. Picture by FRANK REID

"My wife got it done for me. I think it’s marvellous, brilliant.

"It’s a comment my wife would say”

Lewis, of Durham Spray Paints, started work at 10am on Wednesday and had finished by mid afternoon.

It is just a stone’s throw from the Andy Capp statue next to the Pot House pub where Lewis painted a mural of the former Hartlepool landmark the Elephant Rock in June.

Durham-based Lewis, 27, said he loves working in Hartlepool but did not appreciate the popularity of Andy Capp at first.

He said: “I didn’t know the significance but so many people going for a walk, particularly the older generation, were so, so happy and laughing at the caption.

"That for me made it really special that it was a big deal to everyone.”

Andy Capp creator Reg Smythe hailed from the Headland and the strip became a world-wide hit syndicated to 1,700 newspapers in 52 different countries and read by 250 million people globally.

Lewis said he is in talks about further projects in Hartlepool adding: “I think it’s such a great place.”

He is asking anyone who likes his Andy Capp mural to make a donation to the RNLI lifeboat charity.

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