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Stamford Town Council ‘had to act’ on town centre A-boards

Coun Harrish Bisnauthsing has defended the town council's position after it threatened legal action over signs put out by traders in town centre. The move provoked an outcry from business leaders, as reported by the Stamford Mercury on the front page last week.

Coun Harrish Bisnauthsing has defended the town council's position after it threatened legal action over signs put out by traders in town centre. The move provoked an outcry from business leaders, as reported by the Stamford Mercury on the front page last week.

 

A town councillor has defended a letter sent to traders warning they faced legal action if they did not remove A-boards.

Coun Harrish Bisnauthsing (Lib Dem) believes Stamford Town Council was entirely right to threaten to remove the numerous advertising boards that adorn town centre pavements.

And he rejected claims from Stamford Town Team chairman Tim Lee that the council was using “draconian” methods.

Coun Bisnauthsing said: “We have spoken to the traders, some of whom have up to four or five A-boards in the High Street.

“They are causing a lot of obstruction. Quite a lot of people, especially people using wheelchairs, find it very difficult.”

The letter, sent to a number of traders on February 4, said “numerous” complaints had been received about A-boards. Town clerk Patricia Stuart-Mogg asked traders to removed the board within 21 days or they would be confiscated, with the cost levied on the trader.

Mr Lee, who is also president of Stamford Chamber of Trade and Commerce, called for compromise. He cited the example of Bristol, where the city council has drawn up a code of conduct for retailers.

But Coun Bisnauthsing said: “We have been trying to get this sorted for more than a year and a half. We have mentioned in to the chamber of trade but they are not interested.”

He added: “Some people have told me they have stopped going in shops with A-boards.

“We want people to use shops but if people are starting to avoid the shops that are putting A-boards out then it is self-defeating.”

The letter was sent on paper headed by the logos of the town council and Lincolnshire County Council, the highways authority.

A county council spokesman said officers had been consulted on the issue of A-boards and had offered advice to the town council, but it had not co-authored the letter.

 

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