TOWNS like Bournemouth which use ‘hostile design’ to discourage homeless people are to be ‘named and shamed’ on a new website.

Branksome-based artist Stuart Semple – whose Facebook images of anti-homeless bars on a Bournemouth bench went viral with more than 1 million views yesterday – plans to launch the site as early as tomorrow because he wants people to wake up to what he believes is an ‘immoral practise’.

“The idea is that the site will become an online database of hostile design; you’ll be able to take photos with your phone and upload it to the database and name and shame towns and cities who are involved in this immoral practise against other human beings,” he said.

His campaign has already been supported by rapper and broadcaster Professor Green whose Instagram feed slammed the decision to install the bars asking: “What’s the message here? ‘Hey you poor sods with no safety net - you better really hope life doesn’t throw any **** at you now! And God forbid you make a bad life decision! Cause you won’t have the ‘comfort’ of this bench to sleep on! Ha!’ Again, nothing done to tackle the problem, just something to make it more invisible so we can pretend it isn’t happening.”

Stuart, a renowned artist and designer – he’s currently designing a people-friendly train station in Denver Colorado - first noticed the metal bars screwed onto the existing wooden benches outside Zara in Commercial Road as he walked his son into town at the weekend.

“I knew straight away what it was because I spend a lot of my time looking at public furniture and this is designed for one reason and one reason only and that’s to tell homeless people they are not welcome here,” he said.

Although the benches have attracted most attention, Stuart pointed out that the town is sprinkled with what he describes as ‘design against specific types of people’ pointing out the measures he says are against the homeless, such as the green spikes outside McDonalds, the sloping bus-shelter seating in Gervis Road, and the brass ridges on the retaining walls in Bournemouth Square which he says are to put off young skaters.

“Design should be used to make things better for people,” he said. “I didn’t spend time at art and design school to learn to make stuff that makes people’s lives worse.”

*Bournemouth Borough Council said the bars cost £3,650 to purchase and install and the decision to acquire them was a 'multi agency committee decision'.

"Changes were made to a small number of benches in very specific locations in the town centre several months ago, and only following numerous complaints by members of the public and local traders," said a spokesman.

"The complaints related to a number of the benches being unavailable to members of the public throughout the day due to people lying on them during the daytime."