Scarborough Council withdraws Whitby banners plans following public outcry

Plans to put up banners have been withdrawn. Picture from Google.
Plans to put up banners have been withdrawn. Picture from Google.

Scarborough Council has withdrawn plans to hang advertisement banners across streets in Whitby’s conservation area following more than 300 objections.

The borough council had applied for permission to place the four banner signs across Church Street and Sandgate.

In its application, the authority stated that the banner signs would be used to promote “events, culture, attractions and educational establishments” and would be made of PVC or mesh.

The plan caused outrage in the town with more than 300 people writing to the council to object in a little over a week.

The borough council has now confirmed to the Local Democracy Reporting Service that it has withdrawn the plans following the public outcry.

Among the objectors was Whitby Civic Society whose chairman, Dr John Field, called the application “bizarre” and said it went against many of the council’s own planning policies.

In a letter to the council, Dr Field wrote: “The proposed banners would harm and detract from the historic street scene of Church Street and Sandgate, both of which are of 18th Century origin and are characterised by a large number of listed buildings.

“The visual prominence and incongruous appearance of advertising banners would be completely out of character with these streets. Consent should, therefore, be refused.

“Further, the application itself appears to contain a number of inconsistencies and errors. First, it refers to four sites, which the form identifies as in Sandgate and Church Street, but one of the two location plans shows a fifth site, in Baxtergate.”

Dr Field added that the council’s application stated it owns the “land or buildings” where the adverts would be places, something the civic society disputes saying the buildings are in private ownership and the highways below are the responsibility of North Yorkshire County Council.