Illegal advertisers each fined £42,500

We’ve successfully secured a prosecution for the illegal display of unauthorised advertising boards attached to highway furniture in numerous prominent locations in Hemel Hempstead. In total, there were 17 separate offences. 

The two defendants were Nowitslaw Ltd and Litigant in Persons Ltd, based in Hemel Hempstead.

The prosecution comes after we previously warned Nowitslaw Ltd and Litigant in Persons Ltd on a number of occasions about unlawful signs. Despite our Planning Enforcement team’s efforts to secure the removal of these banners, many remained in place. And more banners were subsequently erected.

Nowitslaw Ltd and Litigant in Persons Ltd did not enter a plea, but were found guilty. Both companies were fined £42,500 and ordered to pay a contribution towards the prosecution costs of £1,202.50, as well as a victim surcharge of £120.

Philip Stanley, Dacorum Borough Council's Development Management (Specialist Services) Team Leader, said: “This case highlights our role in maintaining an attractive appearance to the borough and keeping it a place to be proud of. Our action demonstrates the robust approach we are prepared to take.”

Cllr Graham Sutton, Portfolio Holder for Planning and Infrastructure, said: “Unlawfully sited banners are unsightly and can be visually distracting to motorists.

“As the local planning authority we must ensure that the advertisement regulations in place to maintain the attractiveness of our borough are followed. We will take appropriate action against illegal advertising, including prosecuting those who unlawfully site advertising boards and compromise the appearance of our borough.”

To find out if consent is needed for a particular sign or banner, please email our enforcement team on If you're concerned that an advert being displayed is unlawful, you can report it on our planning enforcement page.