This weekend, Cllr Tony Hooke has released an open to letter on the matter of A-Boards, addressed to Cllr Ian Carr (Leader of Test Valley), Sir George Young MP and Cllr Roy Perry (Leader of Hampshire County Council).
The letter is detailed below;
Dear Sir George and Councillors,
There is tremendous concern in the Town about Hampshire County Council’s heavy handed approach to the subject of A-Board frames in Andover. Indeed a legal letter has now been sent out to the businesses from HCC by Recorded Delivery threatening fines of £1000.
I was contacted last night by a lady who runs a business on the first floor in one of the buildings on the High Street. She has no other way of advertising her business. Another business contacted me from Waterloo Court. They have no other way of bringing customers round from the High Street. A simple solution will be to licence businesses to place an A-Board on the same spot each day. This can be done by placing a stainless steel stud in the pavement, and the board placed over it.
I would suggest of £35 a year per business for the licensing.
In order to facilitate this, I would like to meet with Cllr Ian Carr at TVBC. Gentlemen, it is in the hands of you 3 to resolve this matter urgently, for our shopkeepers and small businesses in Andover. There are no other decision makers involved.
Cllr Tony Hooke
County Councillor for Andover South
As reported on Andover & Villages in August, Andover town centre businesses are being written to by Hampshire County Council and given 28 days to remove their Advertising Boards. Failure to comply will result in the removal of the boards, a charge to the business for the removal, a fine and potential prosecution. Businesses are advised to comply.
Cllr Sean Woodward, Executive Member for Economy, Transport & Environment and responsible for the illegal placement of A-Boards, said to Andover & Villages, “The situation with the advertising boards has not changed. The compliance officers are already out collecting evidence to move forward with removal of advertising boards, fines and potential prosecution.”
A group has been set up in Andover to find an alternative way of advertising businesses in side streets and on upper floors, Andover & Villages will continue to inform as information becomes available.
One Andover business owner told Andover & Villages, “Not only is it distressing to understand how I am going to be able to inform potential customers where my shop is, but we are having to deal with a situation where we are told one thing and then another. I keep seeing information from Cllr Hooke saying that he is sorting the situation, only to find out five minutes later that it isn’t true.”
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