Controversial plans to install a large new electronic advertising billboard in place of a street art display on the side of Burnham-On-Sea’s Ritz Cinema have been rejected by Sedgemoor District Council this week.
The authority has turned down the plans from The Ritz Social Club in Victoria Street for a new 6m x 3m illuminated digital display on the north-facing cinema wall.
Town councillors in Burnham-On-Sea also voted unanimously to object against the plans.
Councillors received feedback from nearby residents, including Ollie Hulme, who called the plans “monstrous”.
He said: “For those of us who would have to live with this device towering over our properties, creating light pollution and badly affecting the way this area looks, this application is entirely unacceptable.”
He claimed the billboard would cause a “harm to safety given that a big illuminated screen with changing images would pose a distracting danger to car drivers and others on the road” and that the billoard would also be out-of-character with the surrounding area give its brightness and appearance.
He added: “This application is monstrous. It will affect all our lives, affect the value of our homes and damage the appearance of this area.”
Sedgemoor District Council agreed with the Town Council’s concerns on the grounds of light pollution, design and safety.
Paul Hale, Manager at the Ritz Social Club, told Burnham-On-Sea.com: “We were approached by an advertising firm about this proposal and saw it as a great opportunity to tidy up that end of the building, which some feel is looking quite tired.”
He added that the proposed 15-year contract with the firm would have helped to generate extra income for the club.