City ban on street advertising boards comes into force
The move is aimed to create more accessible, clutter-free streets across Edinburgh.
A city-wide ban on all on-street advertising boards has come into force in Edinburgh.
The move, approved by members of the Transport and Environment Committee in May, is aimed to create more accessible, clutter-free streets across the city.
It is also set to provide more safety to those with disabilities such as sight impairments and mobility difficulties.
The council wrote to businesses across the city earlier this month advising them that all on-street advertising, also known as A-boards, should be removed by midnight on Monday.
Transport and environment convener, councillor Lesley Macinnes, said: "This is ultimately about opening up our streets for all members of society, creating welcoming, clutter-free spaces where people can move freely.
"We've heard from lots of different groups about the mobility issues caused by the presence of temporary, moveable structures such as advertising boards, so it's clear that action needs to be taken if we are to live in a truly equal, accessible city.
"As we approach the implementation of the ban, we've written to all businesses to ensure they have the relevant information, and in the coming months our wardens will be visiting shops, cafes, restaurants and other premises to offer advice and guidance on alternative advertising options."
The council's decision in May to enforce a city-wide ban follows a period of public consultation and engagement with stakeholders, including Living Streets, Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) and the Edinburgh Access Panel, along with various traders' associations, Business Improvement Districts (BIDs) and community councils.
'A city that is open and welcoming to everyone, residents and visitors, no matter what needs or disabilities they may have - this move is a big step in that direction.'Spokesperson for RNIB Scotland
A spokesperson for RNIB Scotland said: "We very much welcome this move by the City of Edinburgh Council to help make the streets of the capital more accessible to visually impaired people.
"A vital element for any successful 21st century city must be inclusivity.
"A city that is open and welcoming to everyone, residents and visitors, no matter what needs or disabilities they may have.
"This move is a big step in that direction."
David Spaven, convenor of Living Streets Edinburgh Group, said: "Many Edinburgh pavements have become obstacle courses in recent years, and removing advertising boards will make it much easier to get around comfortably and safely on foot and in wheelchairs.
"Clutter-free streets will be more attractive and will help to make Edinburgh a more walkable city - and that's in everyone's interests."