Giant digital billboard plan rejected in Scarborough

Plans for a giant digital billboard on the side of a Scarborough town centre building have been refused by a planning inspector.

Monday, 14th June 2021, 12:24 pm
Updated Monday, 14th June 2021, 12:26 pm

Last year, proposals were submitted for the a advertisement which would have been more than three metres in height and six metres in width on the wall of the Victoria Golden Tandoori in Victoria Road.

Sitting almost five metres above the pavement the LED sign would present static images, which would change every 10 seconds, while no moving images or videos would be used.

The applicant, Graeme Hughes, stated in his submission to Scarborough Council that the illuminated display would be switched off between midnight and 6am.

The Sealife Centre branding on the artist’s impression is just for context, the application has nothing to do with Sealife.
The Sealife Centre branding on the artist’s impression is just for context, the application has nothing to do with Sealife.

However, North Yorkshire County Council’s Highways department objected to the plans.

Following a long delay a planning inspector has now been forced to decide on the plans, after the applicant lodged an appeal on the grounds that Scarborough Council was taking too long to make a determination.

Inspector Alison Scott refused the application, agreeing with the Highways department that it “would have the effect of distracting the driver” at a busy four-way junction.

In her decision she wrote: “In this proposed location, the advertisement at the height and scale proposed, with high-definition resolution, would introduce a new and discordant feature into the surroundings.

“It would appear as an incongruous feature that would cause harm to the amenity of the area.

She concluded: “I appreciate the benefits of digital advertisements and their economic role and business rates revenue they can generate, however these benefits do not outweigh the harm I have identified.

“There is little information submitted regarding digital displays and their particular association with ‘visitor experience’ for me to give more than limited weight to the appellant’s

comments on this matter.”

A previous application for a traditional “paper and paste” billboard was refused for the site in 2011, with an appeal against the decision thrown out the following year.