To Let boards control
A Regulation 7 Direction gives control on the number of To Let boards in areas of the city, where there are high numbers of boards on display.
Which streets are affected by the Regulation 7 Direction?
To find out the affected addresses, see the areas linked below:
Why do we want to control the display of boards?
The number of letting boards on residential properties has become excessive in parts of the city, especially where there are high numbers of rented accommodation. This has a negative impact on visual aspects in neighbourhoods and local residents have raised concerns that the quality of the residential environment is declining as a result, which is impacting on the housing market. The law (Town and Country Planning (Control of Advertisements) (England) Regulations 2007) already states that boards are to be removed three weeks after a property has been let, but this requirement is often ignored: some properties display them for long periods of time and some even have boards up all year round.
We have tried to tackle the issue by introducing a voluntary Code of Practice, but this was not successful in reducing the number of boards on display.
After a public consultation, we submitted an application to the Secretary of State, who has made a Regulation 7 Direction restricting ‘deemed consent’ rights for the display of residential boards. This comes into effect on 2 July 2018 and will last for five years.
What does this mean?
Normally, To Let boards benefit from 'deemed consent' rights. However, the Regulation 7 Direction has removed these rights in specified streets.
Do I have to apply for advertisement consent?
In general, yes: advertisement consent is required to display a ‘To Let’ board, which can be done by submitting a planning application, along with a fee. However, to help landlords, we will not ask for planning applications for those boards which follow a new Code of Practice. Where applications for advertisement consent are submitted, only those that comply with the Code of Practice will be considered acceptable.
What if I don't apply?
It is a criminal offence to display ‘To Let’ boards without consent. You may be prosecuted in the Magistrates’ Court. The maximum fine on conviction of an offence is currently £2,500, with an additional daily fine of £250 for a continuing offence.
How will the Direction be enforced?
There will be surveys in the areas. You can report a breach to our Compliance and Monitoring Team using the details below:
- telephone: 0116 454 1000
- post: Planning Department, Leicester City Council, City Hall, 115 Charles Street, Leicester, LE1 1FZ.
A consultation on the issue was held between 26 March 2015 and 24 April 2015, where people were asked about the impact the boards were having and what measures could control them. You can read more on the consultation by following the link below:
We considered the evidence and consultation responses to the proposed Regulation 7 Direction, at the Planning and Development Control Committee on 17 February 2016. We decided to seek the Secretary of States approval to require all letting boards on residential properties within the area to require advertisement consent.
Comments on the proposal
We invited comments on the proposed Regulation 7 Direction, which were sent to the Secretary of State.
You can view all the report appendices using the links below:
- Appendix 1 - Area maps
- Appendix 2 - Article 4 Direction
- Appendix 3 - Consultation June 2013
- Appendix 4 - Consultation analysis June 2013
- Appendix 5 - Letter (code of practice) and voluntary code
- Appendix 6 - To Let board survey summary
- Appendix 7 - Letter and survey March 2015
- Appendix 8 - Consultation analysis September 2015
- Appendix 9 - Leicester landlords association letter
- Appendix 10 - Other options comments
- Appendix 11 - To Let boards survey February 15 2016
- Appendix 12 - Castle advertisements map
- Appendix 12 - Clarendon Park map
- Appendix 12 - West End map
- Appendix 13 - Regulation 7 committee report February 17 2016
- Appendix 14 - Printed minutes, planning and development committee