A new decision to refuse the instalment of two digital displays marks another huge win for Leeds Adblockers and residents. This one was very important as it raised substantial safety concerns at a location that was already extremely difficult to navigate. The Highways Teams regarded the suggested ad infrastructure as particularly unsafe; yet, the applicant Vivid Outdoor Media Ltd wanted their digital displays so badly that they hired a consultant firm to produce a misleading and in parts even unethical report against the Highways Team’s judgement. We urged the submission of another wave of rejection comments in connection to that report in another blog post. Thanks everyone who submitted rejection comments and took part in the battle to keep our streets safe and ad-free. The final decision to reject the digital billboards was made on February 24th, 2021. Today, we celebrate our win together!
It is not uncommon for the applicant to appeal the decision. We’ll keep checking the application portal and keep you updated on the process if that happens. In any case, the planning law is on our side as significant concerns regarding highway safety, driver distraction and pedestrian safety have been raised in this case.
The fight against corporate advertising is a tough one, as the advertising industry is very powerful. They can hire a consultant company every time they don’t like the recommendation of a Highway team or citizens’ objections. They can produce a report that misleads and misquotes, and does not consider the interest of the Leeds citizens beyond the corporate profits. We need to democratise our cities and have a say in what we see (and cannot escape) around us. We did exactly that when we objected to this harmful project!
Thank you and till next time!