Anger as advertising boards seized
TRADERS in Clifton were left furious after council officials seized advertising boards which were deemed a hazard to wheelchair users and other pedestrians.
Council workers seized 20 A-boards which they said blocked wheelchairs and buggies in The Mall and Waterloo Street yesterday.
The council says the move aimed to make pavements safe for disabled people and other pedestrians to use.
It says that any local businesses using A-boards must leave a 1.8 metre space clear on pavements.
Bridal hand tied bouquet (Roses)
2 Bridesmaids (Roses)
Groom & Best Man button holes (Roses)
Discounted rates apply to larger Bridal party requests.
Not to be used with any other offer.
Contact: 0117 2448228
Valid until: Tuesday, December 31 2013
But angry traders say the council is being "mean-spirited" and is treating them like criminals.
Tony Golledge, who runs The Mall Newsagents, said three council workers, escorted by a policeman, began confiscating the boards, telling traders they would have to pay £50 to get them back.
He said: "What the council is doing is ridiculous – people come to Clifton Village because the area is different and has lots of independent shops – the boards are part of the local scene."
Kika Hedgecock, who owns Belle de Jour florists in The Mall, said the council workers also asked her to stop displaying plants on the pavement outside her shop.
"This seems really mean-spirited just before Christmas," she said. "I have no window and if I can't put my plants on the pavement I think I will go out of business."
Tony Miles, chairman of Clifton Village Traders' Association, said: "The council workers came here with police assistance so they were obviously expecting trouble.
"I know there have been complaints about the A-boards but the council has never got in touch with the Traders' Association about it."
The city council said it gave "full warning" to traders by visiting them earlier this week to warn that action would be taken if A-boards were not removed.
A spokeswoman said the seizures followed "major concern raised by Clifton residents that the boards are a hazard for pedestrians, particularly those using wheelchairs, those with pushchairs and people with a visual disability".