Adverts by high interest loan companies could be banned in Kilburn
PUBLISHED: 20:00 08 September 2012
Camden Council are considering using new powers to force them out
Adverts from high interest loan companies could soon be banned across Camden after it was revealed officers are considering using new powers to force them out.
The revelation came from a meeting in Kingsgate Community Centre, Kingsgate Road, Kilburn, about regenerating Kilburn High Road.
Residents complained that the High Road was blighted by too many pawn shops, bookmakers and adverts for high interest loan companies which, they felt, were taking advantage of deprived and vulnerable people.
Cllr Sarah Hayward, leader of Camden Council, told people in attendance that it was an issue she was taking very seriously.
Cllr Hayward said: “Betting shops are really unfortunate as they are in the same use class as banks.
“Councils across the country have lobbied successfully over many years to get a use class changed to control the clustering of betting shops in deprived areas. We know they do and they exacerbate issues of debt and all the problems that come with that.
“On the legal loan shark issue, and I don’t want to get anyone’s hopes up here at all, I have got officers in Camden exploring whether we can use a new power under the Localism Act to ban advertising within the borough boundary of legal loan shark companies.”
Cllr Hayward added that it was still very early days, and the council was looking into the legal aspects of making such a ruling, but said that ‘a more solid answer’ would be given at a council meeting on September 19.
Under the Localism Act, councils across England have been given greater powers to decide what to do in their areas and how.
The general power of competence is one of these powers which allows councils to do ‘anything that individuals generally may do’ that is likely to ‘promote or improve the economic, social or environmental well-being of any part of their area’ – unless the action taken is illegal.
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