New IGT group is told to take down banners

Garstang independent traders launch their new logo
Garstang independent traders launch their new logo

A bid to highlight the shopping and business oppportunities that Garstang offers has been knocked back, after town traders were told to take down their banners.

No sooner had the new Independent Garstang Traders group been launched, than council bosses were explaining that strategically placed banners were causing a public nuisance.

Members of Garstang Chamber of Trade were told that two new eye-catching banners – placed on the Church Street roundabout railings and in Cherestanc Square – must be removed this week.

Leading Chamber member Jill Cross, who was also on the Independent Garstang Traders sub-committee, which helped devise the new branding and promotional initiative, told fellow Chamber members that they had been advised that the Cherestanc Square banner was blocking the CCTV camera there and the roundabout banner was a distraction to road users.

A spokeswoman for Wyre Council explained: “We do support the efforts of the Independent Garstang Traders group, but on this occasion the banner in Cherestanc Square had been tied around the CCTV pole and knocked the camera in the wind, forcing it out of action on Friday.”

She added: “In general terms, people also need to be aware that an advertising banner such as this requires planning permission.

“To put one up without consent is an offence. Any banner on the highway or street furniture without permission is an offence under the Highways Act and it could therefore be removed by the highways authority.”

But undaunted the group, which promotes the fact that the town is home to some 150 unique local independentshops and services, now has plans to place their banner across the high street once the current Garstang Walking Festival banner comes down.

The Chamber is also delighted to report that since the launch of the group on April 25 and associated publicity, including its own Facebook and Twitter accounts, ten new members have signed up to join the Chamber and more are expected to follow.