A crackdown on the #3.5 million-a-year fly-posting industry has
been proposed in a report commissioned by the Government.
John Prescott, the secretary of state for the environment, transport and
regions, is considering new laws which would allow local councils to
take out ’blanket injunctions’ against fly posters and recover the cost
of removing posters from them.
Local authorities may also be encouraged to set up ’legal’ fly-posting
A study by the consultancy, Arup Economics and Planning, found that fly
posting has grown into a well-organised business which is used by ad
agencies even though it is illegal. They described it as a
cost-effective, high-impact medium whose ’slightly anarchic edge’
appeals to its target youth audience and can give a staid product a new,
’The legal status of fly posting and the powers to control it are
regarded by advertising agencies as ’conveniently vague’, with the
apparent ambiguities and loopholes in current legislation justifying the
use of fly posting,’ the report said. ’From the advertising industry
perspective, there appears to be limited concern about the illegality of
fly-posting or the deterrent effect of fines if successfully
The recent move into fly posting by companies that usually use more
mainstream marketing, such as poster hoardings, has resulted in
tit-for-tat retaliation by fly posters, who then plaster hoardings with
their own advertisements.
However, the outdoor industry believes fly posting damages the
environment and prejudices planning authorities against legitimate