At one point it was reportedly plastered over 150 motorway and road bridges, causing much head scratching among drivers trying to work out what it meant.
Gouranga even spawned its own game, much like the Eddie Stobart lorry-spotting one.
Gouranga is a Hare Krishna term
The word began to appear in the 1980s and is thought to derive from the Hare Krishna term Gauranga, meaning “peace my brother” or “be happy” – depending on translation.
It became so well known that the word started to appear elsewhere.
Indie band Half Man Half Biscuit’s song Twydale’s Lament contains the line: “Gouranga Gouranga, yes I’ll be happy when you’ve been arrested for defacing the bridge.”
The phrase also features on the video game Grand Theft Auto.
It’s never been confirmed who did the graffiti, but one man claimed to be the instigator on the Guardian’s Notes & Queries webpage.
“I began in the north west in the late 80s,” he wrote. “Gouranga is a state of mind that can be induced by simply saying the word. I was prompted to begin my campaign following a tragic loss of a loved one from which I thought I would never recover. Of course I did, and ever since I have wanted to ‘pass it on’.”www.gouranga-store.com
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GOURANGA (The Brand)