Whitby Civic Society unhappy with Virgin Money's plans for bright red bank signs

Whitby Civic Society has objected to Virgin Money’s plans to rebrand a bank in the town, describing its colour-scheme as “garish”.

By Carl Gavaghan, Local Democracy Reporting Service
Thursday, 7th January 2021, 2:59 pm
Updated Thursday, 7th January 2021, 3:00 pm

Virgin Money took over Yorkshire Bank in 2018 and has since been rebranding the organisation in its own red livery.

The company has now applied to Scarborough Council to put its stamp on the Whitby branch of Yorkshire Bank in Baxtergate.

However, the town’s civic society, which aims to protect the Conservation Area of the seaside tourist hotspot, has objected to Virgin’s bright red colour scheme.

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How the Virgin Money branding will look in Baxtergate, Whitby

Dr John Field, chairman of the society, in a letter of objection to Scarborough Council wrote: “Whitby Civic Society is disappointed that the applicant has not taken the opportunity of improving the appearance and character of a building in this part of the Conservation Area.

“The colours used do not meet the authority’s own shop front policy, which refers specifically to the harmful impact of ‘garish colour schemes’ on the Conservation Area and states that the authority will encourage the replacement of poor quality shop fronts.”

The bank, in its application notes that a similar colour scheme has previously been allowed by Scarborough Council in the area so Virgin’s branding would “not form an incongruous feature or appear out of place”.

Though not named, it is likely that Virgin is referencing a Scarborough Council decision to allow electronics retailer CEX to use its red branding on its Baxtergate store having originally making the company use an alternative, black front.

Whitby Civic Society also objected, unsuccessfully, to the CEX branding.

Virgin Money was allowed to rebrand the Yorkshire Bank building in neighbouring Scarborough last year.

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