Naked decorator spotted painting woman's house but giggling police let him carry on

Stuart Gilmour
-Credit: (Image: Kennedy News and Media)


Stuart Gilmour was completely starkers, aside from his trusty walking boots, while balanced on a ladder painting the outside of a friend's house 26ft up on Friday June 14. The 45-year-old heard the 'strange' whirring of an electric vehicle pull into the quiet close he was working in, turned round and spotted it was a police car.

To spare the blushes of the cop looking upwards, Stuart shimmied down the ladder only to discover a female officer at the bottom. Stuart said he explained to the bemused policewoman that it's not illegal to be naked in public and that he had the permission of the homeowner.

Happy with the explanation, the officer wished him well before hopping into her car and driving off. Handy Stuart, who jokes he now has 'the most famous builder's bum in the north west', said he understood why police attended but wants to share the message that 'nude is not rude'.

Stuart, from Middleton, Greater Manchester, said: "One female officer came out. "It was an electric car so it sounded a bit strange, I looked round and saw that it was a police car. She pulled in and I thought 'well I'm not going to stay on the ladder so she has to get out of the car and look up at me, I'll come down the ladder and meet her at the bottom'.

"She got out [of her car] giggling to herself and she said 'do you have any idea why I'm here?'. "I said, 'well I've got a good idea' and we were giggling.

"I said 'I'm just painting, I'm a naturist' and gave her the spiel of 'it's not illegal to be naked in public and I've got the permission of the owner'. She just went 'no problem at all, I hope you have a happy day painting' and off she went and that was that.

"I've now got the most famous builder's bum in the north west." The dad-of-two started the mammoth three-day task of painting the terracotta tiles on friend Maria Goodey's house in Middleton, Greater Manchester, on Thursday, June 13.

Stuart and Maria
Stuart and Maria -Credit:Kennedy News and Media

As it was nice weather, he asked the 57-year-old transport co-ordinator if she was ok with him painting in the buff. Maria agreed and he got to work on the three-bed detached house using masonry paint and a brush to transform the red tiles into a brown colour to match the window frames.

At 2.30pm each day, the thoughtful lorry driver donned a pair of tracksuit bottoms and a t-shirt so as not to alarm any kids or families at a nearby school who may pass by. Unbeknown to Stuart, Maria tipped-off neighbours about his attire, or lack of it, in a note she pushed through people's letterboxes describing him as 'really lovely' and urging them to 'be kind'.

Thrilled Stuart says he enjoyed 'normal' chats with neighbours who didn't bat an eyelid at him painting in his birthday suit. The naked enthusiast believes a passing tradie who caught an eyeful called the cops, which led to the visit.

Stuart said: "I enjoy being outdoors and I like to help people out when I can. It was quite warm so I phoned her and asked for permission to strip off, because obviously I don't want to upset anybody, and she said 'yeah, no problem'.

"I wasn't aware she'd posted all these letters through everybody's post box so I found it strange that neighbours were talking to me normally. A passing van with a mini digger had come into the cul-de-sac to turn around and I think it might have been him who called the police."

Regularly going about his business in the buff, Stuart said there was a welcome benefit to painting in the nude - feeling more confident working so high up. Stuart said: "It's the first time I've been on a ladder so high up nude.

"When I was clothed I was a bit shaky and remember thinking 'God this is high' but when I was naked I was absolutely fine. I felt like I was in contact with the ladder and I wasn't going to get my clothes caught on anything because I didn't have any.

"I felt more comfortable naked than in the pants and t-shirt. It was nice to be able to get on with the job and not be worried about upsetting anybody"

Despite feeling more comfortable in his birthday suit than regular clothes, Stuart said he's always mindful of respecting other people's beliefs. Stuart said: "I don't mind the police coming out, they've got to check up.

"If you force it [naturism] on people they're not willing to listen. If you show that bit of respect to families when they have children about, they're more accepting of you. I just think it's the right thing to do. It's not everyday you see someone naked walking around is it?

"I suppose it helps I've got a nice bottom." Maria said: "The top and bottom of it is I didn't want him getting any grief. I wrote something out for every neighbour and posted it through the letterbox. I just felt it was the right thing to do.

"Stuart is lovely and he has an absolute heart of gold and I know he doesn't deserve the backlash. I caused a bit of a stir, there were a few photographs going round.

"As far as I'm aware, because people knew what was happening, nobody had anything bad [to say] and we gather that the person who reported him to the police wasn't actually a neighbour. He's done a fantastic job, I highly recommend him."

Maria's note reads: "Just so you are aware, I have a decorator painting the outside this week, he is a 'naturist'. He promotes 'loving the skin you're in', mental health and wellbeing, 'nude is not rude'.

"He's a really lovely man - please be kind! He will be fully clothed after 2.30pm - thinking of school children."

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