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Fly Posting

Fly-posting is displaying adverts and other promotional materials without permission, on buildings, posts, poles, litter bins and elsewhere in public. Fly-posting is mainly done by businesses and community groups that want free advertising. Many local councils have a 'zero tolerance' policy on fly-posting.

In England/Wales, fly-posting is illegal (in certain circumstances) under the Highways Act 1980 and the Town and Country Planning Act 1990. Offences under the 1980 Act include that of obliterating a traffic sign, while under the 1990 Act it is an offence to display an advertisement in a way that breaches specified regulations. Legal measures to prevent fly-posting include:

  • On-the-spot fines of up to £80
  • Use of fixed penalty notices
  • Prosecution in a magistrates’ court
  • Special powers to tackle Anti-Social Behaviour
  • Charging the offender for the cost of removing the posters

Scotland has similar provisions under the Roads (Scotland) Act 1984 and the Town and Country Planning (Scotland) Act 1997. The only sanction is prosecution before a sheriff, who can impose a fine of up to £1000 and, if the offence is under the 1997 Act and continues after conviction, an additional fine of up to £100 per day.

Visit the Law Search page for full details.


Sections 131(2) and 132(1) of the Highways Act 1980

Section 224(3) of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990

Section 100(b) of the Roads (Scotland) Act 1984

Section 186(3) of the Town and Country Planning (Scotland) Act 1997

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