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Sudbury: SportsDirect.com fined for putting unauthorised sign in conservation area

PUBLISHED: 17:21 10 January 2014 | UPDATED: 17:21 10 January 2014

Councillor Simon Barrett said the council did not take the decision to prosecute lightly

Councillor Simon Barrett said the council did not take the decision to prosecute lightly

Archant

A Sudbury company has been found guilty of displaying unauthorised signage in the Sudbury Conservation Area.

SportsDirect.com was fined £2000 by Bury St Edmunds Magistrates after being found guilty on December 19 last year. They were also ordered to pay £995.12 in costs and a victim surcharge of £120.

In September 2012 the Council was made aware that the sports equipment and clothing company had moved into retail premises in North Street, Sudbury, and had attached an illuminated advertisement display to the fascia of the canopy on the front and side elevations.

An application for advertisement consent for retention of the existing advertisement was only submitted in April 2013 but was refused the following month.

Despite repeated requests to SportsDirect.com for the advertisement to be removed and the issue of a refusal notice, the illuminated fascia sign advertisement remained in place.

The impact from the advertisement was such that further formal action was considered necessary to resolve this matter.

Councillor Simon Barrett, Babergh District Council’s portfolio holder for growth and the local economy, said: “We do not resort to court action lightly, but in this case, given the persistent non-compliance with the advertisement regulations and the harm it was causing to the conservation area, Babergh had no alternative but to prosecute.

“We hope this case will send a clear message to other potential offenders that we will take robust action where necessary.”

A temporary sign is currently displayed on the store in North Street, pending the outcome of a subsequent advertisement consent application submitted by SportsDirect Retail.com for an alternative sign.

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