County will not look 'like Las Vegas' because of advert plan

Assurance has been given that Shropshire will not start to look “like Las Vegas” as a result of council plans to start selling advertising space on roundabouts and verges.

Shropshire won't look start looking like Las Vegas, councillors have said
Shropshire won't look start looking like Las Vegas, councillors have said

The initiative, which Shropshire Council says could raise £392,000 in revenue in four years, was voted through by the authority’s cabinet at a meeting on Wednesday.

Adverts will also start to appear on boundary signs and lampposts, with plans to roll out the scheme even further to include bus shelters, bridges, waste bins and even statues in the future.

But the plans have led to some concern that advertising boards at busy roundabouts and junctions could pose a risk to road safety and cause areas to look cluttered.

Proposing the new policy to cabinet, Councillor Steve Charmley, portfolio holder for highways, said: “I have picked up in the press a lot of negativity about this, about it being distracting to drivers.

“I should point out this isn’t advertising Las Vegas casinos or getting married in St Martin’s Church by Elvis on 50-foot buildings.”

Councillor Charmley said signs were already used by Shrewsbury Town Council on roundabouts it maintains, and discussions would take place between the two organisations to avoid “starting a war”.

Councillor Dean Carroll, portfolio holder for adult social care and public health, said: “This is something that dozens of councils across the UK already do very successfully, including neighbouring Telford and Wrekin.

“I think anything which is unobtrusive – which I trust from the safeguards in this policy it will be – which brings in additional revenue to support the services that Shropshire Council delivers to its residents will be absolutely welcome.”

Councillor Charmley added: “It will be kept under constant review as you would expect. It’s an ongoing process.

“It’s important to me and my cabinet colleagues that Shropshire continues to be a green and pleasant land and a welcoming landscape to everybody, and doesn’t become Las Vegas.”

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