Hundreds sign petition in support of pub's cup of positivi-tea
- Credit: TERRY HARRIS
More than 200 people have signed a petition that opposes the threatened removal of an Ely pub's controversial 'mega mug'.
Headed “notice to remove advertising hoarding on a structure” the eviction notice is signed by head of planning Rebecca Saunt.
The pub has been given “time for compliance” and the small print says they have until the end of August to remove it.
However, a Change.org petition has since been launched by Leonie Smith with the aim of keeping the Alice in Wonderland-decorated cup in its place.
She said: "We feel that the mug enhances the streetscape and brings joy to many of the local citizens, as well as to visiting tourists.
"We posit that 'art enhances any place where art is found', as Banksy has proved in Bristol."
She and those who have signed the petition are asking the planning officer to reconsider the enforced removal of the mug.
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They are also asking the council to allow the owners of the pub to apply for retrospective planning permission "so that this much loved and admired landmark may remain in place".
The giant cuppa was acquired off E-Bay but originally commissioned by Network Rail in 2014 to celebrate the launch of a solar bridge at Blackfriars station, London.
The plea for it to stay comes after Councillor Bill Hunt, chairman of the planning committee at East Cambridgeshire District Council, said earlier this month: “The council received several reports that a large object has been erected onto the High Flyer Pub in Ely.
“Officers have been onsite to review the structure and are liaising with the owners.
“While this is a matter for the council’s planning department to deal with, I have also visited the site.
“We would like to thank residents for reporting this and reassure them that the council is looking into this matter.”
According to the notice, titled‘power to remove structure’ and the council's powers come from the Town and Country Planning Act.
The pub can appeal – which could force a stay of execution – but failing that the council is entitled to “enter the land and remove it”.