It’s that time of year again…Bright billboards are coming to town…

…AND WE NEED YOUR HELP TO OBJECT!

In principle, Lambeth Council should refuse the recent application for a “large” digital screen on 34 Queenstown Road (ref 22/03939/ADV) based on their Local Plan, but lately they seem to forget (or ignore) principles, so we think it’s better to be ad-safe than sorry.

In their laughable application documents, the media company, Wildstone, working with London Lites, is claiming ultra-low luminance levels similar to a poster billboard when in fact its daylight maximum level (5,000 cd/sqm) is twice the level of BT Hubs and still much higher than that of the recently installed pavement units from Clear Channel, such as this one on Acre Lane (3500 cd/sqm). We still that’s pretty bright already.

KEY POINTS TO INCLUDE IN YOUR OBJECTION

– Electricity cost. Although the company doesn’t disclose the screen’s energy usage, we know that a double-sided bus-stop type screen uses the energy of about 4 average UK homes, and a large one more than 11 homes, so we estimate this 13.50sqm screen of more than 7 households. While we are in an energy crisis and are being warned of blackouts this coming winter, installing new screens to sell us stuff (we can’t currently afford) is unacceptable.

– It is assumed the panel would be on 24h as the company didn’t precise otherwise. This means light pollution in a residential area and a further, huge waste of energy.

– The screen would have adverts changing every 10 seconds, which on a 30 mph road is bound to distract the same driver several times during their passage.

– It’s at a street corner which several residents report as dangerous, with aggressive driving and lots of delivery drivers and with no separate cycle lane, pedestrian crossing nor traffic lights.

– The screen would physically cover the bathroom vents from residents behind the wall, which is unacceptable and is a health hazard to them.

– Our Adblock Lambeth detectives couldn’t find a valid application for the original 48-sheet billboard which has been removed. Unless proven otherwise, we can only assume that the billboard was put up illegally and gained Deemed Consent after 20 years. On top of that, we also believe that now that the board has been removed, advertising consent (even paper) can no longer be granted automatically.

That should be plenty of reasons on top of your own, but we have added guidance to refer to or quote in your objections if you wanted to add (no pun intended) some crunch.

To object, head directly to the application’s page or to the planning portal and search for the above reference number. You will need to quickly register if you haven’t already, but if you really don’t

want to, you can also email planning@lambeth.gov.uk making sure to include the reference number in the subject and body of the email.

AND SOME MORE POINTS…

If you have a personal link to the location, tell the council, and remember that the application can be refused on the grounds of harm to amenity or to public safety.

We think it’s worth also reminding Lambeth of decency standards regarding public energy usage in an energy crisis, so go ahead just in case, especially since the National Planning Policy Framework states that:

“157. In determining planning applications, local planning authorities should expect new development to: a) comply with any development plan policies on local requirements for decentralised energy supply unless it can be demonstrated by the applicant, having regard to the type of development involved and its design, that this is not feasible or viable; and b) take account of landform, layout, building orientation, massing and landscaping to minimise energy consumption.” (p. 46).

Some of Lambeth Council’s own medicine from the recent Local Plan – feel free to quote in your objection. Policy Q17, especially:

B. In order to enhance the environment, proposals for the renewal of advertisement consents for existing large panel advertisements will generally be resisted.

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