THE owners of a village chip shop, who have been forced to take down their new Union flag sign following a complaint, say the decision is “an insult”.
Angry Lesley Salthouse and her husband Peter, who have run the Naze Lane chippy, Naze Lane, Freckleton, for almost 25 years, have been told by the council the sign is not in keeping with the village.
The couple lost a planning appeal over the issue and now the sign above the front of the shop must go.
Lesley, 53, fumed: “Given that we are an English chip shop and our main sales are fish, we thought, what better than a Union flag with a St George’s flag on each side. The reasons for the refusal for permission are that the sign is gawdy with too many angles, triangles and colour.”
She added: “Everything else seems to be allowed from different backgrounds, cultures and nations and yet you try to fight for something English and British and it’s snubbed, as far as I’m concerned.”
Lesley said she and Peter, 54, who originate from Preston and now live in Freckleton, organised a petition and received just under 600 names in support. She said local councillors and the parish council had supported their case.
She even wrote to Buckingham Palace to complain – but was told the Palace could not get involved in the matter.
“It’s the union flag, for goodness sake,” said Lesley, “What’s wrong with flying the flag of England and Britain?”
Lesley said two nearby food outlets both have multi-coloured signs illuminated late at night about 30ft away from houses.
A council spokesman said: “The council refused planning permission on the basis it was too big and also too visually busy. It was gawdy design and out of character for a semi rural village. It has been appealed and dismissed on the same basis. We acknowledge that there is some support for the sign in the area but this particular sign was not suitable. Mrs Salthouse is free to submit another planning application which will be viewed thoroughly and fairly.”