Adverts are coming, like it or not

We knew this would happen. Despite holding out against allowing advertising behemoths to take control of Wanstead High Street, Redbridge Planning has been overruled by the government’s Planning Inspectorate and a digital display board is now being installed outside the Lighthouse Fish & Chip shop. It’s probably the first of several such displays.

How the display will look, via Redbridge Planning

The decision means that companies can show adverts on massive TV screens on the street, whereas shopkeepers may not have illuminated shopfronts in the interests of preserving the Wanstead Village Conservation Area.  

The inspector ruled that the adverts should be allowed because the board is “not prominent” and would “respect the surrounding area”. If you can’t follow that logic, the reasoning is set out in the inspector’s ruling, below.

One hopes the advertisers will be paying substantial rates to the council for the right to show us adverts. The payphones will rarely if ever be used. There’s going to be a defibrillator on the board outside the Lighthouse – let’s hope that won’t ever be needed. But it’s an expensive way to have one installed, especially when there are already defibrillators at the Corner House, the Co-op, the Evergreen Surgery and in Tesco.

It’s hard to say what is the benefit of these new boards to residents, council tax-payers or voters.  The inspector believes they contribute to “vitality and viability” of the street. Again, the logic is set out below.

  • Last year Redbridge Planning set rules on the images which could be shown on a new board which was installed outside Tesco as part of a public phone which will also never be used, including that they are not video, don’t flash, don’t change more often than every 10 seconds and aren’t too bright. 

9 thoughts on “Adverts are coming, like it or not”

  1. Totally against the proposal the council wants to bring in for the conservation area….I hope the council can appeal the decision!!!!

  2. Absolutely scandalous for the government to overrule the local authority on this where there is only commercial interest (and to the commercial benefit of organisations outside the borough!), and no public interest reason for central government to intervene.

    It’s not in keeping with the very sensible local plan. Wanstead has managed to preserve a high-quality village feel to the high street, which contributes to its attractiveness to residents and visitors. That helps the local economy.

    This will only benefit JC Decaux and global companies advertising things like fast food, sugary drinks and so on.

    I hope Redbridge will escalate this. Perhaps a judicial review of the Planning Inspectorate’s decision?

  3. Again we must remember that Redbridge have been against this and have been overruled by the government inspector.
    Redbridge can only fight the big boys with the staff and resources it has available to it, and that will never be as much as the big boys can spend constantly re-appealing them. I seriously hope that Redbridge can get some much needed revenue from this at least, as it is going to need it.

Comments are closed.