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‘Piccadilly Circus’ plan for Cock Hotel junction

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Plans to cover a derelict Northampton pub with 16ft TV screens would leave the area looking like Piccadilly Circus, residents have claimed.

The White Horse pub in Kingsthorpe has been closed since 2009.

The owners of the building had hoped to demolish it, but after failing to agree plans with the council, they have now revealed plans to ‘obscure’ it with nine 16ft advertising screens.

The move has been strongly opposed by many people in the area. Councillor John Yates (Con, Spring Park) lives close to the pub. He said: “It’s appalling. It sounds like it’s going to be just like Piccadilly Circus.

“It’s not going to do anything to improve road safety at all and I will do everything I can to make sure it doesn’t happen.”

The screens would be 9ft off the ground but reach almost as high as the top of the pub’s roof.

Under the screens would be a mural celebrating the history of the Saints rugby club.

Officials from Northamptonshire County Council’s highways department have objected to the plan because of fears the screens could distract people driving through the busy Cock Hotel junction.

Their view has been backed by the councillor for the area, Sally Beardsworth (Lib Dem, Kingsthorpe). She said: “I don’t know what the owners are thinking about. Television screens would be a real distraction. It’s just bizarre. We don’t want to look like Piccadilly Circus around here, it’s not that sort of place.”

The council will decide if the development should be allowed in the next few weeks.

The planned development would feature LED display screens used to 
obscure The White Horse pub for up to five years.

Plans submitted to Northampton Borough Council by the building’s owners said: “The proposal is to obscure the building which is considered to be an eyesore and to clad it with a series of LED display screens on top of a mural”.

Documents submitted to the council said the move would add colour and interest to the area.

 

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