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A Greenwich fish and chip shop that's causing a stink over painting, as owner tells LBC he's 'determined to keep mural up'

20 March 2024, 08:50 | Updated: 20 March 2024, 08:58

Golden Chippy customers support Union Jack mural amid council row

Henry Riley

By Henry Riley

Established in 2005, The Golden Chippy has been a mainstay of popular Greenwich cuisine – even winning “best restaurant in London” on TripAdvisor in 2016.

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The mural on the wall of the Golden Chippy
The mural on the wall of the Golden Chippy. Picture: LBC

But the Southeast London shop is in the news for all of the wrong reasons at the moment, following a bitter row with Greenwich Council.

It’s clear, however, that the shop is relishing every moment of this, and is enjoying the uptick in customers.

When I arrived at the restaurant it’s impossible not to spot the £250 mural at the centre of the spat. Owner Chris Kanizi purchased the art a few months ago, which features a fish in a top hat, holding a Union flag and a large portion of chips with the words “A Great British Meal” painted on a side wall.

However, the local authority has failed to see the funny side and claim they have received “a number of complaints about an unauthorised advert”, whilst insisting the row has nothing to do with the presence of a union flag.

Mr Kanizi tells me that the council called the art “an inappropriate mural” and demanded he “seek planning permission” for it.

He added that he had initially told the council that he would “paint it over”, but admits that he did not tell the council “when” he would do so. He mischievously tells me “it could be about a year later when I get round to it”.

LBC's reporter visited the iconic chippy
LBC's reporter visited the iconic chippy. Picture: LBC

But the support Mr Kanizi has received he describes as “fantastic”. Not only is the an increase in customers, he also says he’s been inundated with phone calls from retired solicitors and planning officers offering their advice.

The overwhelming support has made The Golden Chippy owner more resolute than ever, he told me “I’m absolutely more determined now to keep it up than to cave into them”.

And customers are outraged by the news.

Colin tells me he has travelled from Dagenham just to try their cod and chips.

“I am a bit of a connoisseur of fish and chips, but I wanted to come and support them over this nonsense with this. I find it crazy. And I do think it is because it’s a Union Jack, not because it’s graffiti”

Colin adds that it “would definitely have been allowed to stay up if it was Banksy”.

Another novice to the area is Tamsin who has travelled from Kilburn. She tells me “I only heard about this place because of the mural and I heard the council were trying to get it taken down”

“In my opinion it’s refreshing to see the Union Jack… I’ve come down here to try the fish and chips and to get a picture of the mural so I can share it everywhere!”

The chippy is a Greenwich landmark
The chippy is a Greenwich landmark. Picture: LBC

Also outraged is Jamie, originally from Chile who is tucking into a scampi and chips, as he tells me “I’ve been here before. I’m a supporter and love the food – but I’m especially here because of the situation with the union flag, which we should be celebrating.

I was also the man to break it to Matt the local neighbour who was very unhappy. “It’s a great restaurant and I don’t see anything wrong with the mural… what exactly is the problem”.

The row clearly is going to continue. Owner Chris is ready to take this right to the end, and it’s clear from what I’ve seen that his customers are ready to go with him.

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