Jayne Murray, a public artist


A consultation in Efford, Plymouth, UK, about young people in public spaces.

The consultation was commissioned by Shillam + Smith as part of a masterplanning process. It began with research with young people, who felt there were 'too many no's and not enough yes' to their presence and behavior in their local public spaces.

To test this out we created t-shirts sporting the request 'yes/no delete as applicable', and a 'yes/no' board where people were asked to delete either, according to their view of young people being in public spaces. This took place outside the main local shopping parade and was accompanied by spinning yes/no signs.

The response was 84% said YES to young people in public spaces. Largely this 84% was conditional - if, but, as long as.

These responses were made into two posters and placed in the local post office window for a month.

We have some idea then, when a no can become a yes according to adults: that there are acceptable forms of behavior for public places. But how is this agreed?