Butcher fights to save his A-board

A butcher is mounting a legal battle to save his A-board after Cheltenham Borough Council ordered him to take it down.

Allan Taylor, of Grosvenor Butchers, will appear in front of Cheltenham magistrates on 9 May.

Allan set up his butcher’s shop 18 years ago and was granted permission to set up an A-board for a one-off fee of £75. But the council has enforced a stricter policy on A-boards since June 2009 to keep the streets uncluttered and looking attractive, as well as addressing safety and access concerns. It says he must take has A-board down to comply with the Highways Act.

Trevor Gladding, community protection manager at the council, said: “When businesses don’t comply, we have no option other than to take the necessary enforcement action.”

However, Allan said: “I am losing £300 a week [from taking the board down], which is a big reduction for a small business.”

The council successfully prosecuted two local businesses for displaying illegal A-boards in 2009. Five further cases were withdrawn in 2010 after they were resolved through dialogue. An application for an A-board now costs £90 in administration fees. If consent is granted, the fee for the first year is £367, with an annual charge of £19.