FEARS have been raised Leamington could be overrun by garish American-style advertising signs.
The Leamington Society and some members of Leamington History Group have complained to Warwick District Council over a sign outside the south lodge at the entrance to Jephson Gardens.
The red and white Vauxhall sponsored sign was placed there by the council two weeks ago as part of a contract with advertising company Immediate Solutions.
But some users of the south lodge are annoyed about the new addition to the green heritage site – as they were not allowed to place any advertising on the grass in keeping with conservation regulations.
History Society member Margaret Rushton said: “It is the kind of sign that is normally seen on a road island and would be eye-catching to drivers.
“I’ve written to various councillors as well as officers and the most I have heard back is they will deal with it after the election – but it will be too late then.
“We are not allowed to put any signs outside the lodge, but Vauxhall are allowed their hideous and huge sign there.
“We work with the park officer to bid for green flag status and because this sign is so out of keeping with the area I am worried it may go against us when we bid again this summer.”
And locals are concerned about the impact the sign will have on tourism.
Margaret added: “There were people from as far afield as Japan, America and Australia. They all want pictures outside the entrance to Jephson Gardens and they will have that hideous sign in. With social media that picture and advertising for Vauxhall is winging its way across all four corners of the globe.”
And Marianne Pitts, vice-chair of Leamington Society, also expressed her concern the town was not being seen in the best light.
She said: “The sign spoils the town and spoils the view for pedestrians and tourists. It’s very obtrusive and is right next to a flag boasting about the park’s Green Flag status.
“This sets a dangerous precedent for the town. Do we really want it plastered with American-style advertising?”
Warwick District Council confirmed it had a contract with Immediate Solutions for eight signs across the district.