Planning Portal

PPS 17: Control of Outdoor Advertisements

1.1 Advertising is a multi-million pound industry and now forms part of everyday culture, often adding colour to our streets. It is a good indicator of business health, can be a valuable source of information and is viewed by many as a form of entertainment in itself. Outdoor advertising is a key element of the industry and contributes to the creation of a vibrant and competitive economy.
1.2 Most outdoor advertisements are transient in nature as signage is regularly updated and premises change hands. Some advertisements are clearly temporary, such as signs notifying the public of a forthcoming event or large scale advertisements screening building sites. There are however those advertisements which are more permanent, for example traditional fascia signs above shops.
1.3 All advertisements affect the appearance of the building or place where they are displayed. Given the potential impact of outdoor advertising on amenity, both positive and negative, there is a need to balance the requirements of the industry with the protection and, where possible, enhancement of the character and appearance of our cities, towns and villages. There is a corresponding need to ensure that advertisements will not prejudice public safety.
1.4 The advertising industry is generally aware of ongoing change in the pattern of retail activity and it is the business of the industry to respond to the legitimate commercial needs of different businesses - everything from retail parks and high street stores to small hotels and corner shops.
1.5 The Department for its part wishes to ensure that care is taken with the display of outdoor advertisements so that they do not prejudice amenity or public safety, having regard to the specific circumstances of each proposal. Overall the Department wishes to encourage the provision of well designed advertising which respects the building or location where it is displayed and which contributes to a quality environment. There is a particular need to protect the unique qualities and amenity of the countryside and important townscape.
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