In September 2022, Dover District Council acquired land in and around Bench Street for the purpose of regenerating a derelict part of Dover town centre. The Council had submitted a Levelling Up Funding bid of in August 2022. The bid was successful and in April 2023 the Council was awarded a grant of £18.1m that, together with Council match funding of £1.8m, will deliver among other things, a new further education campus building and a business centre.
One of the buildings on the site used to be decorated by an original work created by Banksy in 2017. In 2019 the artwork was painted over by anonymous hands. Following thorough investigations, it was found that the work, prompted by the artist’s thoughts about the UK leaving the European Union, could not be saved in its present form not least because the building on which it is painted is in a dangerous condition.
In collaboration with Dover District Council, in March 2023 a team from Factum Foundation was tasked to record the shape and surface of the painted over wall in high-resolution, using LiDAR and photogrammetry, in order to preserve the digital data of the painted wall, which will become part of the town’s historical records in addition to the countless pictures taken of the work before its disappearance.
The high-resolution data can now be used to recreate the artwork in digital or even physical form as a facsimile, in a new location around the town or elsewhere, subject to Banksy’s approval.
Pedro Miró using a LiDAR scanner to capture the building's accurate measurements © Factum Foundation