Though it’s unclear who made the allegations or why, Gannon claims that people were asking him to prove he was or was not Banksy so often that it was “undermining my ability to do the work,” of a councillor, he told BBC News. It even got to the point where he began to wear a button that spelled out, “I am NOT Banksy.”
In an interview with the Telegraph, Gannon speculated that the rumor that he was Banksy was started by a rival council group who took advantage of Gannon’s years as a local artist to serve as the basis of the allegations. Gannon recounted that while the theory he was Banksy started swirling around this past January, it reached a head when he was voted in as councillor in May.
Graffiti started springing up all around the small Welsh town of Pembroke Dock and, in the end, Gannon and his fellow councillors decided he would have to resign in order to protect the town from further controversy.
In his resignation letter, acquired by the Telegraph, he wrote, “It was felt that, to protect the reputation of the town, Pembroke Dock did not need another controversial councillor dragging the reputation of the town through the mud.”
A story that could only have been created in the chaos of local politics, even a known prankster like Banksy could have never imagined his anonymity would one day have such a weird and specific knock-on effect.
Gannon will return to his past profession as an artist.