A ROWS retailer paid £1,500 appealing a city council ban on a banner outside his Chester shop – then found they had erected council signs across the street.
Animal clothing store managing director Simon Hussey commissioned the banners in the brand colours to attract more customers to his Northgate Rows shop.
But Chester City Council conservation enforcement officers served him with an enforcement notice for not having planning permission, and his costly appeal was refused.
Simon then discovered the council had strung its own banners between the Northgate Street buildings to advertise Chester Summer Music Festival and Chester Mystery Plays.
He said: “It is double standards. I was resigned to the fact I had lost the banners, but then I went to shop and saw their banners across the street. It was like someone had hit me across the face with a wet fish.
“I respect Chester’s heritage, but the council has got to be realistic.
“It is a beautiful city but unless we can get customers to come to our shop we and other small businesses will have to leave and go somewhere else where we get more help.
“I set up a shop in a listed building in Aberystwyth and the council couldn’t have been more helpful.”
Chester City Council spokesman Mike McGivern said: “Chester City Council allows banners to be displayed in designated places, such as across Northgate Street, to promote festivals and events which will boost the cultural and economic life of the city.
“These banners are not used to promote individual businesses and do not require planning permission as they are displayed under the council’s remit to promote the well being of Chester.
“Banners draped across the historic city rows by individual businesses would require planning permission, which they would be unlikely to receive as they are unsightly on the rows and tend to detract from one of the main attractions that bring thousands of shoppers and visitors to Chester in the first place.”