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Controversial digital billboard erected

A large digital billboard which has caused anger amongst local residents has finally been erected. The billboard has been placed next to the southbound side of the M32 in the car park of a Bristol mosque.

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Residents have been left angry following the erection of a 50ft digital billboard

The 50ft pillar mounted by a digital billboard was designed to be in the view of motorists coming into Bristol city centre along the M32 motorway and was granted planning permission in August 2016.

The sign is one of many that has sparked debate across the city raising questions over road safety issues and the increasing number of digital billboards.

When planning permission was revealed in 2016, mosque trustee Ahmed Samad Chowdhury was not overly concerned about the plans. Speaking to Bristol 24/7 Chowdhury says: “The new pillar and screen is not going to make any impact at all, but I do understand that if something new comes to the area there will be a few people who don’t like it.”

Where before we could see sky and trees we are now confronted with this brutal monolith

However, almost two years’ later and residents have been described as being shocked when the billboard was finally erected, due to its direct obstruction to views from their houses.

Speaking to Bristol Live, local resident David Harper describes how the appearance of the “monstrous tower” was “an absolute shock.” Harper says: “Where before we could see sky and trees we are now confronted with this brutal monolith. The planning application misleadingly characterised the area as commercial land; it’s not. We and many others live here.”

To add further insult to injury, the billboard’s debut advert features an image of a £76,000 car which campaigners have dubbed “bitterly ironic” as the area has one of the highest pollution rates in Bristol.

If you have any news, please email carys@linkpublishing.co.uk or join in with the conversation on Twitter.

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