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Council granted new powers to control ‘To Let’ boards

Published on Monday, June 11, 2018

LEICESTER City Council has been granted new powers to stop landlords putting up boards advertising their properties in some parts of the city.

The council successfully applied to the Government for a Regulation 7 direction which will effectively ban the use of ‘To Let’ boards in some areas around the University of Leicester and De Montfort University.

It means that landlords or agents will now need to apply for planning consent in order to put up signs advertising their properties in the worst affected parts of the city. If they fail to comply, they could face court action and be fined up to £2,500.

Some addresses in the Windermere, Hazel, Clarendon Park, Greenhill, West End, Ashleigh Road and West End conservation area parts of the city will be covered by the ban.

Cllr Piara Singh Clair, Deputy City Mayor and lead on regulatory services, said: “We know that people who live close to the universities are concerned about the almost permanent proliferation of ‘To Let’ boards on their streets.

“We have had a voluntary code of practice in place for a number of years but only a handful of landlords complied with this. Despite our best efforts, these advertising hoardings continue to create an eyesore in areas with a high concentration of rental properties. They are intrusive and often misleading, serving as little more than advertisements for the letting agents themselves.

“We are pleased that the planning inspector has agreed that more powers are needed to tackle this problem in the worst affected parts of the city.”

Leicester City Council submitted its bid for the Regulation 7 direction in October 2016, following a public consultation on the proposal. The successful bid was confirmed by the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government in February 2018.

The new powers will come into effect from 2nd July 2018 and last for five years.  Landlords and agents will be given formal notice to remove any boards ahead of this.

Councils can apply for powers to control the display of ‘To Let’ boards under Regulation 7 of the Town and Country Planning (Control of Advertisements) (England) Regulations 2007.

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