’City signs not a waste’ says council leader

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PORTSMOUTH City Council’s leader has defended plans for new signs welcoming visitors to the area – despite a cost of more than £2,000.

The council will replace two ‘Welcome to Portsmouth’ signs with two new ones bearing the same message.

However they will be 3.2ft wider and 2.6ft taller.

The council’s planning committee approved the application, meaning the signs can be put up at two sites, close to Eastern Road’s junction with Anchorage Road, and Mile End Road near the Market House Tavern.

But Tory councillor Luke Stubbs said: ‘I wonder how we can justify spending money on doing this when we are laying people off and making cuts.’

Fellow Conservative committee member Cllr Donna Jones said: ‘I’m not sure this is a good use of council money, but that’s not a consideration for the planning committee.’

The signs have cost the council £2,792, but Lib Dem leader, Cllr Gerald Vernon-Jackson, defended the decision.

He said: ‘The signs have already been paid for.

‘It’s very important we let people know we’re here and what the city’s all about, and they are an important part of that.’