Van artist pays tribute to Stoke City, Leicester City & England legend

A white van man who describes himself as a “graffilthy” artist has painted a heart-warming tribute to football hero Gordon Banks.

Ricky Minns, 44, who goes by the name Ruddy Muddy, has created a muddy masterpiece on the back of his van, paying tribute to the late England goalkeeper.

Speaking of Gordon Banks, the artist from Norwich, Norfolk said: “I used to play in goal when I was younger so he was a hero of mine.

“He was an absolute legend – people have said he should have got a knighthood.

“I just wanted to capture the essence of him and you could see how much effort he was putting in to that save.”

Gordon Banks, who was England’s 1966 World Cup-winning goalkeeper, died on Tuesday (Feb 12) aged 81.

The footballer was regarded as one of the game’s greatest goalkeepers, earning 73 caps for England.

Banks is best known for his save from Pele during the 1970 World Cup against Brazil, which went down in history as “the greatest save ever made”.

On the other half of the van, Ruddy has also paid tribute to the late rapper Cadet, who was tragically killed in a car crash on the way to gig on Saturday (Feb 9).

The 28-year-old rapper, whose real name is Blaine Johnson, was in a taxi on his way to a performance when the vehicle was involved in a fatal crash.

He said: “He was one of my daughter’s favourite artists and she used to play me all his songs in the car and tell me about his music.

“Gordon Banks was something for me and Cadet was something for her.”

The “graffilthy” artist, who is a delivery driver for a flower company, started drawing on vans 11 years ago to stop his children reading rude words on the back of vans.

The artist creates works of art in the dirt, grease and mud of unwashed Transit vans using his fingers and his designs have hit national news on a number of occasions.

Ruddy’s most-recognisable designs are those of Prince Harry, Leonardo Di Vinci’s Mona Lisa, Prime Minster Teresa May, and Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn.

He added: “It’s quite funny really, it was all because I didn’t want my kids to see the filth that people scribble on vans with their fingers.

“I started to go over people’s rude messages with my fingers, first I just drew mountains and things and then I got a bit more artistic each time.”

Ricky’s technique has evolved over the years and he now sprays a secret mud recipe onto vans, but still finds his work weather dependant.

by Emilia Bruce-Watt

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