Tattoo work leaves mark of friendship

LASTING FRIENDSHIP ... Barry Crake with his friend and client George Hallway, and, inset, the fading tribal tattoo which has blighted his life.
LASTING FRIENDSHIP ... Barry Crake with his friend and client George Hallway, and, inset, the fading tribal tattoo which has blighted his life.

A TATTOO which blighted a South Tyneside man’s life is slowly starting to fade away.

For the last 18 months George Hallway has been getting a number of tribal markings removed from his face.

The 42-year-old, from South Shields, has received the treatment, which has so far cost £450, from micro-pigmentation technician Barry Crake, and now the results are beginning to show.

He said: “It hasn’t been easy and I have had to be very patient, but I am over the moon with the results. Every time Barry uses the skin removal cream, and the scabs fall away, my tattoo just keeps getting lighter and lighter – it’s amazing.

“Everyone is starting to notice, even the lady in the corner shop. It really is remarkable.”

Mr Hallway first met Mr Crake in 2010 at his Bellissiomo-ne surgery in Roker, Sunderland, after he approached him for help after a friend tattooed his face while drunk.

The skin expert went on to form the Human Life Trust after realising there were hundreds of others whose lives were a misery due to unwanted marking and scarring. However, the charity, which was inundated with clients, struggled to flourish due to a lack of funding and Mr Crake had to resign last month due to the strain on his mental health.

But the father–of–one, who is now focusing on his own company, has vowed to continue helping Mr Hallway, saying he became “a true friend”.

He will continue his charitable work alongside his own business, but will now mainly focus on scar and scalp camouflage treatment, and will still help those with unsightly tattoos at his discretion.

Mr Crake, who suffered from a nervous breakdown in October, said: “I decided to resign and help the likes of George again by donating my earnings to help him continue his path to recovery.

“He is the only unemployed person to actually help me recover from my breakdown. He was always on the phone seeing how I was, and the special thing about George is he returned the favour for me helping him.

“I find this heart-warming, and now that I have recovered, I aim to have him tattoo free before next year.

Mr Crake is training other people to carry on his good work, such as Kurt Le Quesne.

However, he is also urging people who previously took part in fundraising events for the HLT to hand in their sponsorship fees.

He said: “Last year, a number of people came along to a zip wire event held on South Shields cliffs and pledged sponsorship to the trust.

“But the charity is still waiting for an awful lot of people to hand in their cash, so I would remind them to do so as soon as possible. If they don’t then it may suffer closure.”

For more information, call Mr Crake on 567 0543, visit or e-mail

Twitter: @ShieldsGazVez