Reduce Letting Signage in the Garden Quarter

Reduce Letting Signage in the Garden Quarter

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Garden Quarter Association started this petition to Cheshire West And Chester Council

There is a proliferation of TO LET signs blemishing our neighbourhood. Whilst we accept that the student population is transient, the appearance of signage does not correlate with the academic year or the time frame that students will likely be house-hunting - more and more it seems to be the case that signage is a permanent feature advertising the letting agents rather than available accommodation.

These signs blight the landscape and give the distinct impression that the Garden Quarter is 'Studentville' (as one agent shamelessly dubbed it) rather than a residential area in which family homes and HMOs sit side by side. Please note, this is not an anti-student petition; it is anti our neighbourhood being used for free advertising. Indeed, this practice is possibly more to the detriment of student tenants - not only does it foster anti-student sentiment amongst some residents, it also advertises to the criminally-minded that properties likely contain multiple valuable electronic devices and could be vacated or less secure outside of term time.

The enforcement of regulations has proven inadequate and agents have been unresponsive so concerned residents have asked the council to follow the lead of several other university cities (including Liverpool, Newcastle, Leicester and Lincoln) in banning the signage altogether. This move represents no threat to the businesses in a digital era where information is available at the click of a button and does not have to be plastered above every other front door. Despite the support of Councillor Bob Rudd and Chris Matheson MP, the response from CWaC's planning department is that they do not have the requisite man-power to change the regulations. The aim of this petition is therefore to show that we have had enough of living within a letting agent turf war that bombards the community with eye-sore billboards; CWaC need to find the resources to take action as a matter of priority.

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