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									      Fly Posting

 Operational Policy

Environmental Enforcement
Fly Posting Operational Policy


The purpose of this document is to set out the Environmental Enforcement team’s
operational policy for tackling fly posting.

The overarching policy relating to fly posting, is detailed within the Environmental
Enforcement Policy.

Not all incidents of fly posting are the same. Therefore this policy sets out a framework
to work within, in conjunction with the overarching Environmental Enforcement Policy,
the Investigation Manual and Fly Posting Guidance (Appendix 4).

Types of Fly Posting

There are three main types of fly posting;

          •   tied/ placed on the highway or a highway structure

          •   pasted to highway structures, council owned property and private property

          •   signs that need planning permission or have planning permission but
              breach their conditions

These are further divided into other more specific categories as detailed in Appendix 1.


Prior to any enforcement a comprehensive campaign of education and engagement
shall be used across the borough. It will be directed at all interested parties including;

          •   Pubs and nightclubs
          •   Shops and businesses
          •   Council owned properties e.g. Leisure
          •   Town and Parish councils
          •   Local events and sport clubs
          •   Schools
          •   Construction companies

The campaign will set out the rules and regulations surrounding advertising using signs
and posters. It will include dos and don’ts as well as advice, contact details and the
potential penalties for not complying with regulations and council policy. A mail drop
targeted at businesses that have in the past used illegal signage and/ or are in an area
that is affected by fly posting will be selected to receive information on fly posting.

The Insight magazine will also be used to promote the message, as well as an updated
web page. Other business units will be encouraged to promote the policy. These will
include Trading Standards, Environmental Health, Leisure and Licensing

Fly Posting Operational Policy


Highways Customer Service will be promoted through the campaign as the ‘single point
of contact’ to receive reports of incidents fly posting. However, it is likely that on
occasions calls will also come into Environment Maintenance Customer Services and
Planning Enforcement.

All reports will initially be recorded on to the respective Customer Contact Management
Systems and then passed to the relevant officer for investigation.

The main responsibilities for dealing with Fly Posting are split into;

    •   Tied to highway structures – Highways
    •   Pasted to council owned or maintained property – Environmental Enforcement
    •   Signage and private land – Planning Enforcement.

See the Fly Posting Matrix Appendix 1 for a comprehensive list of responsibilities.


The Environmental Enforcement team will use the various powers available to them and
work in partnership with Highways and Planning Enforcement to take the appropriate
action. These actions will begin after the education campaign in line with the Corporate
Enforcement Policy. All enforcement action will follow the principles and guidelines set
out in the Investigation Manual. Case files will be similar to the general format of those
used in preparing cases for non payment of a fixed penalty notice.


For a general guide to the investigation process see the Flow Chart in Appendix 2.

Contact should be made with the reporter of the incident to verify the details, location
and length of time that the fly posting has been in situ.

A site visit should be made to the site to view the Fly Posting in question. All individual
incidents should be photographed and the details added to the Log Sheet (see Appendix
2). A separate Log Sheet should be created for each individual incidence, even if they
are organised by the same company or they have different events taking place at the
same venue.

When completing the Log Sheet, the following information should be recorded:

        a)    Address of premises/location where the                     posters/advertisement
              are displayed
        b)    The type of fly posting being displayed
        c)    What/who is being advertised?
        d)    Name and address of any promoter or organiser

Fly Posting Operational Policy

       e)     Date of the advertised event if applicable
       f)     Name and address of the venue for the event if applicable
       g)     Number of incidents

All other potential illegal signage in the vicinity of the reported incident should be
recorded and passed to the relevant team as per the matrix in Appendix 1.

If in the close vicinity of the incident, fly posting is tied to highway structures, this may be
an ideal opportunity to remove these, having firstly made sure that it is safe to do so
(see removing Fly Posting Risk Assessment). Having photographed and recorded this
fly posting in situ, they should be removed and passed to Highways together with the log
sheet and photographs. On occasions, it may be appropriate that the enforcement for
these additional incidences be carried out by Environmental Enforcement if the area also
had related posters stuck to structures.

Shared Database

Environmental Enforcement, Highways and Planning Enforcement will share a database
of all incidents of fly posting which are being, or have been enforced against across the
borough. This will enable officers from each team to identify if the offender is already
being enforced against by the authority, the number of prior incidents and other relevant
information. In the case of multiple offences, the data held on this database will be used
to agree which team will take the lead on considered prosecution action.

If in doubt as to the legality of any incident of fly posting, the database can be used to
identify whether the posters have been placed with permission or are legally displayed.

Cancelled Notices

In the case of fly posting that is difficult to remove immediately i.e. pasted or
permanently stuck, and where it is practical, a Cancelled Notice will be affixed. This will
form the definitive statutory legal notice requiring the business to remove their fly posting
within 48 hours. The notice will clearly state that the fly posting has been cancelled and
once applied will obliterate the vital areas of the advertisement. Care should be taken to
accurately record the date on the notice when applied.

On return to the office, a letter will be sent to the business deriving benefit from the fly
posting by first class post. The letter will inform the business of service of the notice and
that they have become responsible for its removal within 48 hours. It seeks the co-
operation of the offending business and advises that if the local authority has to remove
it, a recharge will be sent to the business to recover the removal costs and to
compensate for any damage caused.

In cases where it is not practical to apply a Cancelled Notice, officers should follow this
policy from the Notice Expiry section below.

Fly Posting Operational Policy

Identifying the Offender

Information with regard to promoters/organisers, which is not displayed on the poster,
should be obtained by telephoning the relevant venue concerned.

Posters advertising recordings rarely contain any information other than the name of the
recording artist. The relevant record company who controls the record label may be
obtained by visiting any large record store or by consulting Music Week Magazine.

Carry out a company search via Companies House to ascertain whether or not the
promoters, recording company or other person deriving benefit is a limited company.
These checks are available free online at

Names and addresses of Licensees may also be obtained from Licensing and names of
the owners of shops and food outlets may be obtained from Trading Standards or
Environmental Health. Searches can also be made by using Yellow Pages, business
directories, internet search engines etc.

Enforcement Actions

All the details gathered from the inspection will be entered as an action on Pro-active. A
notice will be drafted to the relevant person and or company. The notice must include
the relevant legislation, the action that we are requesting be taken, the timescale to carry
out the action and a schedule of the types and whereabouts of the fly posting. It must
also include the penalty for non compliance. Where there may be a Head Office e.g. it is
part of a national chain, a copy of the notice should be sent to the Company Secretary or
equivalent person.

The timescales for removing fly posting can vary and enforcement officers will have
discretion on this decision, based upon the scale and profile of the offence. In most
cases the removal period will not be less than 2 days, however the request may range
from immediate removal to a maximum of 10 days.

With such short timescales for the company or individual to act, it is good practice to
serve the notice in person or to hand deliver to the address. When a notice is served a
Certificate of Service must be completed by the officer.

In cases where fly posting is immediately removed by the Council (usually ones that
have been tied to Highways structures) the Highways team will formally warn the
relevant person or company of possible further action if the offence is repeated. In these
cases the Highways team store the offending advertisements and offer return on
payment of an administration fee.

As normal, all actions in relation to the offence must be recorded on Pro-active and
should include next action dates.

Notice Expiry

Fly Posting Operational Policy

As soon as possible after the notice has expired, a site visit should be conducted to
check for compliance. Fly posting that was subject to notice that has not been removed,
should be photographed and recorded.

In cases of non compliance with a notice, a decision must be taken in accordance with
the Corporate Enforcement Policy regarding the next action. In the majority of cases it is
likely that a prosecution case file will be prepared reflecting Environmental Enforcement
policy and underlining the importance that the Council places on achieving Community
Priorities. On occasions, based on the evidence gained it may not be possible to prepare
a prosecution case file at this point. In these cases an extension of the deadline or an
invite to an interview under caution may be considered. However these decisions will not
be made in isolation and will always be made in agreement with the Neighbourhood
Services Team Leader.

Fixed Penalty Notices
Fixed Penalty Notices (FPNs) may be served for the offence of fly posting, however they
may only be issued to the person/s that are actually seen fly posting i.e. caught in the
act. They cannot be used against someone who is deriving benefit from or who did not
commit the act of fly posting. FPN’s for this offence are currently carried by Police
Community Support Officers and Environmental Enforcement Officers …

Repeat Offences
Repeat offences either by the same person/ company or different people but the same
venue deriving benefit should be dealt with following the principles of the Corporate and
Environmental Maintenance Enforcement Policies.

If previous offences were dealt with by Highways or Planning agreement will need to be
reached on whether to take further action and who will lead on it.

In these cases the correct person should be identified within the company (i.e. the
Company Secretary in the case of Plc’s) and invited to attend an interview under
caution. Further actions will follow based on the out come of or non attendance at the
interview. These actions will be in accordance with council policy these Policies and the
guidelines set out in the Investigation Manual.

Appendix 1

Fly Posting Operational Policy

                             Fly Posting Matrix

               Board, A   Tied to     Pasted on Tied to       Stuck to    Private
Type           board on   highway     highway   non           non         land
               Highway    structure   structure highway       highway
                                                structure     structure

Receipt of     Highways    Highways   Highways    Highways    Highways    Planning

    Who        Highways                           Env Maint
                           Highways   Env Maint               EnvMaint    Planning
Investigates   Planning                           Planning

   Who         Highways    Highways   Env Maint   Env Maint   Env Maint   Planning

               Planning    Planning   Highways    Env Maint   Planning
Prosecutes                                                                Planning
               Highways    Highways   Env Maint   Planning    Env Maint

               Highways    Highways   Highways    Planning    Planning    Planning

Fly Posting Operational Policy

    Appendix 2
                              Fly Posting – Investigation Flow chart

                                                                                Has permission
                                                     Is Fly Posting
         Fly Posting                                                            been granted by
                                                      advertising a       Yes                           Yes        END
          identified                                                              Highways or
                                                   charitable event?


      Offence witnessed
          by CSO or                             Log and photograph Fly
                                    No                                               No
         Enforcement                                   Posting.

             Yes                    No

                                                   Attach Cancelled
       Can offender be                             Notice if practicle

                                                  Establish Person(s)
                              If offender is                                        If Ltd Company
                                                  deriving benefit or
                             juvenile, follow                                        send standard
      Determine age of                           publicity from the Fly
                                 Juvenile                                         letter to Company
          offender                                      Posting.
                           Intervention Model                                         Secretary at
                                                  Carry out searches
                                for FPN’s                                          registered office.

           Over 18

                                                    Send standard
        Serve Fixed                               letter to person(s)
       Penalty Notice                               established as
          (FPN)                                    deriving benefit/

          Log and
                                                     EXPIRY OF
       photograph Fly

                                                                                                          Decide next action
                                                                                                          in accordance with
                                                      Has notice                                             Enforcement
                                                                                 Photograph and
                                                  requiring removal                                           policy and in
      Follow process for                                                  No    record fly posting
                                                    been complied                                           agreement with
       payment or non                                                              still in situ
                                                         with?                                              Neighbourhood
      payment of FPN –
                                                                                                            Services Team
           as litter.
                                                                                                           Leader – possible

                                                          END                                                   END

Fly Posting Operational Policy

Appendix 3
                      FLY POSTING SITE RECORD LOG

Location             Poster      Surface       Description   Photo comment
                     Type                                    No


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