Brixton Road digital billboard refused planning permission after campaign

An anti-advertising charity is celebrating its first win, after a digital billboard on Brixton Road was refused planning permission.

Adblock Lambeth saw 200 people sign their petition and 49 lodge formal objections to Lambeth Council, as the council rejected the bid.

In their complaint, one Lambeth resident said: “This will spoil the look and character of the neighbourhood, and promote businesses and brands that local businesses cannot compete with.”

The proposed sign would have changed 12 times a minute, allowing it to display multiple ads and have a stronger impact on passersby than the traditional billboard which currently stands.

Adblock Lambeth opposed the development, and outdoor advertising in general, for a variety of reasons.

Camille Aboudaram from the group said: “Rapidly changing, brightly lit digital screens can be a dangerous distraction to drivers, increasing the risk of road accidents.

“But we should also be concerned about what the proliferation of outdoor adverts is doing to our mental health.

“Modern advertising works by subliminally manipulating our emotions to want things we don’t really need.

“I love Lambeth and want to protect and improve it.

“For me that means fighting for an urban environment which celebrates our diversity, supports local businesses and creates a welcoming and creative community – not one that pressures us to buy, buy, buy.”

The organisation was also against the billboard because it would create light pollution, even shining directly into the windows of flats in the area.

Shockingly, it would have used the same amount of electricity as 11 households.

Lambeth Council refused the marketing company Daylite permission to position their screen on the roadside on the grounds of harm to visual amenity.

Adfree Cities, the network behind Adblock Lambeth, are working on an array of campaigns, including tackling sexism in adverts and ending the promotion of high carbon products like cars.

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