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Antipub 82 antipublicity - Montauban


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Antipub 82 was formed in Nov 2005 (by an englishman) in Montauban (82000) to draw attention to the fact that the town's entrances are ruined by the multitude of publicity hoardings that have been installed. 12 cover up actions (tarpaulins with wry ecological slogans used to cover up the hoardings) later and  one year on, a local by - law is being made to halve the number of boards. A plethora of press and TV coverage has been attained, proving that the population is fed up with the publicity invasion. (article in english in French News february page 50). A film/docu is circulating on internet and has been shown in three film  festivals and will be shown at Pau University 14th March.

 With the aid of Paysages de France, in Montauban, three illegally installed giant totems (Mc Donald's, Géant and Campanile), and 20 boards around the historic monuments have been removed.

 Anyone wishing to help in the fight to clean up town entrances should join Paysages de France*, or if nearby contact antipub 82 .**

*  http:// paysagesdefrance.free.fr

**   aleluis@club-internet.fr

Film/docu 'Montauban et les 400 panneaux' downloadable on  http://www.bap.propagande.org or may be seen on ZaleaTV  http://www.zaleatv.org

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This is a terrible terrible problem here in the Dordogne as well, so good on you. I hope your efforts will have an impact on the French authorities.

This is a serious problem here but even worse are the new developments of pavillons (small square bungalows, usually pink) popping up absolutely everywhere here. They stand out like sore thumbs and there seems to be no effort to build them in keeping with the local area. It is heartbreaking because many are built on the outskirts of beautiful villages, that have now been ruined forever.

I do hope the French authorities wake up soon, I am seeing it all around me.[:'(]

Good luck.

Edit:  Paysages de France, the above link doesn't seem to work so hope you don't mind I included it in my post.

http://paysagesdefrance.free.fr/

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[quote user="WJT"]

This is a terrible terrible problem here in the Dordogne as well, so good on you. I hope your efforts will have an impact on the French authorities.

This is a serious problem here but even worse are the new developments of pavillons (small square bungalows, usually pink) popping up absolutely everywhere here. They stand out like sore thumbs and there seems to be no effort to build them in keeping with the local area. It is heartbreaking because many are built on the outskirts of beautiful villages, that have now been ruined forever.

I do hope the French authorities wake up soon, I am seeing it all around me.[:'(]

Good luck.

[/quote]

Many of these pavillions have been built by young French families who can no longer afford to buy a home because of rising property prices, so you're on pretty shaky ground here. As much of the rise in property prices can be attributed to foreigners moving to these pretty areas, the ground gets even shakier! You seem to have fallen into the trap of wanting to keep an area the way you like it, rather than having it respond to the needs of the indigenous community. I'd give the matter a bit more thought before you start complaining.

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I do understand that KathyC, because the UK faces that problem if not worse. However, with your argument there shouldn't be a need for any planning at all.  They are allowing dozens of these properties to be built within sight of ancient villages (many villages as it happens in this region), and also what would be considered green belt in the UK.

I presume you are suggesting that is correct to allow new home builders to build as many cheap houses as possible wherever they want. In fact, that appears to be what is happening. It also appears at least in this area to be the same handful of builders as well of which I would imagine have no problem with this idea.

There could be many other ways to build affordable properties all over the department but there just seems to be no planning whatsoever. All of us here have been effected but we have two neighbours that I know personally in different parts of the village that have been directly effected by this. One was told when she bought her property that no building would be allowed next to her. Well, she found out last summer the so-called green belt area around her had been sold by the farmer that owned it and she will have new houses built right next to her. The other neighbours, the exact same thing is happening directly across a small road from their house and will block the a beautiful view. Again, their neighbour owned the land and sold it to a developer and they too were told when they bought the house by the Marie that the land could never be built on.

It sounds as if you are very lucky where you are and this "no planning" and basically no more green belt is not effecting you. Fingers crossed it never will.

In your post, you have implied that I am being a snob because I don't appreciate the fact that there is a need for affordable property for young families. Well, I am far from being a snob and I do understand that need, but I don't believe this is the way forward in resolving this issue.

You ask me to give this matter some thought, well I have given it a lot of thought, have you?

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WJT, I think you are completely wrong here.  I live in an historical village in the Dordogne where the carte communal was recently changed to allow some new Perigordine style houses to be built.  The opposition to the change came from - the Brits - the guy that owns the Chateau (Brit, biggest maison secondaire in the world, only occupied for a few weeks a year) and another Brit couple who tried to drum up opposition to a dangerous wall being replaced because they didn't like the alternative.

We NEED these new houses.  We NEED the new families.  The Brits and other incomers have bought so much property in the village centre and inflated the prices so much younger people cannot afford to buy, the commune (158 people) is aging so fast because kids are leaving and we have no incomers, other than a few holidayers/maison secondaire owners.

We need the new houses, we need the tax revenue in the commune, we need new blood, small children at the fetes, new ideas etc.

And of course there are stringent planning regulations, to suggest theat there aren't is just plain wrong-headed.  Everybody from Batiment de France to the Historical Buildings people have a say in our village development because the village is so old.  But, they don't live here we do and the new builds are an essential part of MY commune remaining both viable and vibrant.

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Tony F, the website on our OP's original link is a bit telling too.  "Spoiling the thing we [sic] came here for" (or some such, I'm afraid I do not quote it precisely ).  My memories of France during my childhood (40+ years ago) were always of a string of adverts heralding every small town and those wonderful ads painted on the ends of people's houses.

People must live somewhere.  Modern houses (as so many of us on here know) are much cheaper and easier to maintain, and not everybody has the luxury of a small equity pot from the sale of a more valuable home elsewhere, and a decent income - as I had - to renovate and maintain an older home.  I am sure that years ago somebody would have complained about the building of the house I live in!  There are more and more of us on the planet and this is just destined to be a fact of life.  Population control, anybody?

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I think that Tony's spot on about this issue and WJT you're completely wrong. The fact that an area "would be considered green belt in the UK" is of no relevance whatsoever. I agree that "all of us here have been effected" (sic) but the effect has been that young people have been able to stay in their home area near their families. I thought that the quality of family life was one of the reasons that people moved to France, or is that only the quality of their family's life? Even in the UK you have no right to a view.

I'm not saying that you're a snob but your attitude is pure nimbyism. Yes, inexpensive housing is needed but not near where my friends and I live. Of course I've given the matter thought; that's why I was so quick to reply to your post. I've bought in a town with houses all around me. I don't need to pretend that I own the whole country as so many people seem to want to do.

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I agree with both of you, but Tony the key in what you have said is Perigordine style houses, that is not the case where we are. They are basically small pink houses that stand out like sore thumbs and are not built in a sympathetic way to blend with the surroundings, if they were perigordine style that would be different.

There have been a few built like you describe here and are very nice, small and affordable but sympathetic. But I still wouldn't like even these to be developed on property next to, or in front of me when I was told it would never happen and I bought a property on that basis. There has been a lot of controversy about this in our village in fact there have been meetings with the groups you have mentioned because there are many complaints and most of the complaints are coming from the French people living here.

How would you feel if a developer started building half a dozen of these houses next to you particularly when three years earlier you bought your property based on being told building of any sort would never be allowed? I think you have to question what exactly does the future hold with planning in rural communes.

I fully understand the need for affordable housing in the area but there has got to be a better way than ruining the beautiful French countryside and ancient villages. As my poor neighbour said to me, the French are shooting themselves in the foot. Tourism is a major industry here and if they spoil their heritage and the beauty of France over the next 20 years or so they could suffer the consequences and can never turn back.

I still believe there are many ways to do it properly and for one, as Tony put it, Perigordine style houses is a good start for the Perigord and other regional styles in other areas. Not the pink and beige Lego land developments that are taking place at the moment. [:(]

For god sake even McDonald's in some areas are restricted and have to build in a certain way to blend. By the way, wouldn't like one of them built across my house either,  unless of course I was told about it before buying my property.[Www]

 

P.S. I had a look at that site and how anyone could not oppose to the blights on the landscape and the beautiful region they are trying to save is beyond me. I for one hope they get a lot of support and the French authorities take notice.

Edit: Just saw your post Kathy, I think you answered yourself. You haven't a clue about this situation and this matter and it would not directly effect you, living in the city. Very easy to stand in judgement of others that are in different situations. I also don't appreciate yet another comment such as " I've bought in a town with houses all around me. I don't need to pretend that I own the whole country as so many people seem to want to do". I am not one of those you are referring to that pretend to own the whole country and if you actually read my post perhaps you can get at least a gist of what I am trying to say on planning, not affordable housing.

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If you had bothered to read my post you'd have seen that I said I've moved to a town (the edge of a small town as it happens) not a city. I've lived in a very rural area of the UK and you would hear the same views as yours from wealthy incomers everytime the question of affordable housing for local young people or local workshops/industry  was put forward."put it somewhere else, not next to me"! Your posts are not about planning issues at all; you seem only concerned that you and your friends have had the "prettiness" of the surrounding area spoilt. You keep on about "green belt" land which I don't believe is a concept that exists in France and your comment about "pink and beige Legoland developments" is patronising in the extreme. Sticking a phony tower at one end of a house and a bit of stone cladding doesn't make for good architecture; what it does do is put up the price of such houses beyond the reach of young locals, thus ruining the point of affordable houses.
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You are the one being patronising not me, you don't have a clue even though you would like to think so. I am not wealthy and neither are the people that I mentioned, far from it. One couple are locals and one isn't, and they are neighbours that I have met since moving here, therefore are not friends as yet. Yes, I feel very sorry for one in particular indeed because she thought she had realised a long time dream by buying a house in France, that has now turned into a nightmare and she was lied to and has put everything into this house. I know you would not understand this at all and would have no sympathy. However, it is a far cry from your wealthy neighbours causing yourself and young people problems in the UK. That is not the situation here, this is a person on a very small income and was very brave to move here on her own and lives a very simple life.

I do understand fully the need for affordable housing and my comment about the style of housing has everything to do with the builders and planners nothing to do with being a snob or NIMBY as you so cleverly stated. I certainly want to see more affordable housing built and don't mind it BIMBY, it just needs more forethought and better planning.

By the way, we are going through renovations at the moment and we had to submit plans for planning permission, I assume you believe this should be done away with as well.  In your words, you have bought in a town with houses all around you, this has in essence given you the assurance that nothing will change and effect you, because you knew what you were buying. Of course, they could tear down the house next door and build a concrete tower block, but in calling it that, it would be stating a fact and I think I would be clever enough to know it would not be a reference to the residence but the planners and authorities that had it built. I would also realise that perhaps an ordinary person has invested everything they have in a property and now will be effected and perhaps stuck and ruined at no fault of their own. But I gather a tower block would not be a problem for you in any case.

By the way, I would imagine 95% of the people on this forum have bought or will buy property in rural France be it in the countryside or a village. Most will be better off than some of the young local families but I would hazard to guess that not too many of us here are wealthy. We are just ordinary people trying to make a better life for ourselves.

Again, just my opinion what is attracting many to France, is of course the family values as you mentioned but also the lifestyle and beauty. Otherwise we could move to Spain or Florida or many other places in the world where building is constant and planning is nowhere to be seen. However, most choose France because it is special.

 The reason we want to live here may not exist in the near future at least in many rural areas. I am sure the same rules would not apply for example in central Paris or many towns, perhaps like the one you live. Perhaps you did make a very wise choice in that decision, well done.

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[quote user="WJT"]

Most will be better off than some of the young local families but I would hazard to guess that not too many of us here are wealthy. We are just ordinary people trying to make a better life for ourselves.

[/quote]

We are not wealthy... by British standards. Compared to many French people in rural communities, I'd say a lot of older British people here are rich beyond local French expectations. I do understand the "don't spoil the environment" opinions but I also don't like the perception of us "wiser" incomers informing local French authorities how they should be managing the development of their affordable housing. That would be patronising.

What I also dropped in to say (in a monkey-ish / kitten-ish sort of way) is: puhlease establish the difference between effect and affect. Except when being ironic. [:D]

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I have to say that what makes me slightly uneasy about the whole issue is that the campaign was led by an Englishman. Without knowing anything about the history, I feel it looks like a bit of a toss-up between whether this was because of apathy on the part of the locals or a case of incomers imposing their sensibilities on the locals. I know the latter can be taken up by the authorities - there are similar examples in England, a farmer friend (and parish councillor himself) in a rural, agricultural community in Sussex found himself in a minority when a vote was passed to campaign against the farmers with their noisy livestock and tractors that left mud everywhere, because it was a 'select upmarket residential area'.

As far as pavilions are concerned, many of the communes in our part of France actively promote these, with subsidised building plots, in order to prevent the exodus of families to the cites (because they need work, not because the British are forcing them out) and preserve the life of the community. Their appearance and colour schemes are closely controlled by the commune, so they are what the French desire, even if they do offend British nimbyism.

Advertising signs have been part of France for years. I think some of those who object to the MacDonalds etc hoardings (and I hate MacDonald's as much as anybody) would feel rather differently about the old, faded, Dubonnet publicity painted on the end walls of old buildings.

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WJT

Of course I believe in planning constraints; so do the French. Unfortunately the people who make these decisions don't have the same sensibilities as you do. As Will says, the French seem to like this style of housing so I can't see why you feel that you have the right to impose your aesthetics on them.

I think that you're getting the whole thing out of proportion with your talk of people's lives being ruined; I can't see how a few new houses, even a housing estate can do this, unless what you're really worried about is the effect on house prices!

In fact I do have some clue what you're talking about here. Our little semi is facing a large garden on the opposite side of the road. The immobilier told us that the neighbour adjacent had bought this so that nobody could build on it. However, we realise that her circumstances could change and she could sell up or sell it as a building plot in the future. We looked at it and decided that although it's pleasant looking out on a garden at present, if someone were to build a pavillion on it, or even a small block of flats it wouldn't be the end of the world. I certainly wouldn't feel that my life had been ruined, even if it knocked a few grand off the house price!

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[quote user="KathyC"]

WJT

Of course I believe in planning constraints; so do the French. Unfortunately the people who make these decisions don't have the same sensibilities as you do. As Will says, the French seem to like this style of housing so I can't see why you feel that you have the right to impose your aesthetics on them.

I think that you're getting the whole thing out of proportion with your talk of people's lives being ruined; I can't see how a few new houses, even a housing estate can do this, unless what you're really worried about is the effect on house prices!

In fact I do have some clue what you're talking about here. Our little semi is facing a large garden on the opposite side of the road. The immobilier told us that the neighbour adjacent had bought this so that nobody could build on it. However, we realise that her circumstances could change and she could sell up or sell it as a building plot in the future. We looked at it and decided that although it's pleasant looking out on a garden at present, if someone were to build a pavillion on it, or even a small block of flats it wouldn't be the end of the world. I certainly wouldn't feel that my life had been ruined, even if it knocked a few grand off the house price!

[/quote]

 

No, it wouldn't be the end of the world but if you had put everything you had in a little house for retirement in the countryside and were told by officials that the land next to it was not constructible, I know I would be a little upset.

 It is not just one pavillon, she has told me it will be many. By the way, I am not even sure what sort of houses will be built, they may not even be pavillons. In any case, whatever they are if she wanted to sell and move, it would be very difficult because unfortunately,  it will have an "affect" on the price of her property. Now I do understand what you are saying, this would not be the end of the world for you, particularly in a town where you are surrounded by other houses and buildings. I also understand you would not be bothered if it knocked a few grand off of your property price as you say. Chances are you would stay put because it would be acceptable to you living in a town. However, this will have an affect on her day to day life and for anyone buying in the countryside.  Just beware, because it appears to be that no matter what you are told by officials, it may not be the case.

I am happy to hear that those of you that posted are not concerned about this happening to yourself or others. However, I disagree with the attitude that being foreigners, we should never question this sort of thing or anything that is decided in France. By the way, it would never affect us personally either because our house stands in the middle of our land, I just feel it is wrong that it happens to others and I feel that the French are making mistakes in this regard,  regardless of me being a foreigner. I don't wear rose coloured glasses and believe everything the French do is correct. By the way, many French feel as I do. I can't imagine what developers have to abide by in the cities particularly places like Paris for example but they appear to turn a blind eye in the countryside.

 Also, from reading another forum, it is true, the person on the website is a Brit, but he has lived in his community, married to a French woman since 1982. Very sad that people are saying he should just accept things the way they are because he is not French and that is how things are done here and just keep stum.

Catalpa, sorry, I wasn't being ironic at all, just thick. [:$] I knew it felt wrong after writing "effect" the first time but I just carried on. I know it is stupid, but believe it or not I do know the difference. [:)]

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I only said  that the local anti publicity campaign in Montauban was 'run by an englishman' because I thought it may be interesting for forum users on this site to know that it's alright for foreigners to 'get involved' in French politics. I've lived and worked in France since 1982 and my wife is French. The articles in the local press don't even mention the fact that I'm English. One journalist did wryly remark that antipub 82 could surely  could have engaged a spokesman with a better accent, but that's all, and he didn't put it in print. I've always been well integrated, I only have french friends etc.

 One third of publicity hoardings in France are illegally installed and Paysages de France has them removed. The state of entry roads to French towns is a scandal, recognised by a large majority of French people and many eminent academiciens (such as Micel Serres) - open your eyes!!

           As for the horizontal development that makes the outskirts of many French towns resemble the worst US excesses, yes, Paysages de France calls for new laws to curb the spread of this commercial gangrene. We feel that new housing developments and isolated housing projects should be examined more closely and restrictions imposed and because any new development increases road use dramatically  this should be taken into account.

 http://paysagesdefrance.free.fr

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Funny but as somebody who has around six such signs around where I live I can assure you that action is taken if a sign is placed illegally and that you must have permission to put them up and that there are rules. One of my signs was put in the wrong place and the DDE took it away and didn't even tell me. They were OK when I explained it the person I had employed put it in the wrong place and then asked them where I could put it ( [:)] ) and we sorted out a suitable position (God that sounds painful). Likewise we had one sign attached to a pole with a road sign on, this is also illegal and was moved by us after we got a letter from the Gendarmes. So I can't see you need some sudo political group to try and get laws and bylaws changed when all you need to do is make the DDE do their job. Don't bother down here mind as they are pretty much on the ball. Personally I like the big signs for the supermarkets because it reminds me what to buy.

This is all based on signs by the side of the road on ground that the DDE is responsible for. Fields are a different matter and you can put whatever you like in a field (sign wise) if you own it or have permission from the owner. Now personally if I had a field and I let somebody put a panel in it and this lot tried to take me to court I would fight them every inch of the way, even as far as the European court because it is a direct attack on my civil and human rights. Perhaps the person who owns the field is very poor and rents the space out to get some badly needed money. Why don't these groups pay the people NOT to put signs in the fields then every ones wins.

As to the housing, well it has to happen I am afraid and the reasons why have been very well argued by others. I Think this is an English thing, I note that in one of his posts WJD gives the impression that the lady having the houses built next to her is English, not that it's really got anything to do with it I guess. Sure I can understand people getting upset but it could happen anywhere. Even worse if you buy a house in Spain and find your house has been built illegally (how you hide building a complete illegal housing estate is a bit beyond me mind) and has to be knocked down. That’s life I suppose.

 

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Paysages de France, I say good luck to you if you see something that needs to be changed and you campaign to do it. I only asked the question because I didn't know the background and it wasn't clear whether this was nimbyism or local apathy. For what it's worth there has been a big campaign in our part of France against the 400kV power line from the Flamanville nuclear power plant and British people have played their part in it. We are all residents, and taxpayers, regardless of nationality after all.

I agree that there are rules about sign boards, but as we all know France is full of rules and many of them do not get enforced, or are not enforced consistently, and moreover there are contradictory rules and guidelines.

As long as a balance is struck then good luck to you. By that I mean a balance between preserving a location or a scene in aspic, and local needs and French traditional practices. There is a need for low cost housing, and a tradition of roadside advertising and I am sure it is possible to respect these, and make progress, while making sure things stay within acceptable limits. Too many campaigners forget these principles and refuse to look at the wider picture.

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Quillan; You certainly can't erect signs in a field just because it belongs to you. The law of 1979 (very laxist, unfortunately and under enforced) states that outside of town borders (after when the town's name is barred) publicity hoardings or signs are not allowed except if they are advertising a commerce that is of specific interest to travellers (restaurants, garages etc) and only a maximum of 4 per commerce.

        A sign or hoarding  has the particularity of projecting into a public space without obtaining the permission of people subjected to its presence, so it's obvious that rules have to be elaborated to protect the invasion of that space that is the property of every citizen.

       Signs and hoardings are only tolerated and they have no intrinsical right to be there. Your local DDE, in removing your illegally placed signs is enforcing the law (which most DDE's don't bother doing) and should be commended. As for taking the issue to the european courts (of planting signs in a field because it belongs to you) - you are being ridiculous (and probably spending too much time on forums - because you have a seasonal activity)

   In a magazine or newspaper, one can turn the page, and nowadays one can zap the tv adverts - the problem with outside advertising is that it is imposed on the population.

    Insulting Paysages de France, which has the backing of many eminent personalities in France, is only likely to bring us new members.

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Is paysagesdefrance.free.fr the same as paysagesdefrance.org?  I don't understand why there are two orgs fighting much the same causes with the same logo. [8-)]

I agree with the fight against roadside poster boards - they are a hideous scar on the landscape at the approach to many towns.  I've signed the petition, for what it's worth.

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[quote user="Paysages de France"]Quillan; You certainly can't erect signs in a field just because it belongs to you. The law of 1979 (very laxist, unfortunately and under enforced) states that outside of town borders (after when the town's name is barred) publicity hoardings or signs are not allowed except if they are advertising a commerce that is of specific interest to travellers (restaurants, garages etc) and only a maximum of 4 per commerce.
        A sign or hoarding  has the particularity of projecting into a public space without obtaining the permission of people subjected to its presence, so it's obvious that rules have to be elaborated to protect the invasion of that space that is the property of every citizen.
       Signs and hoardings are only tolerated and they have no intrinsical right to be there. Your local DDE, in removing your illegally placed signs is enforcing the law (which most DDE's don't bother doing) and should be commended. As for taking the issue to the european courts (of planting signs in a field because it belongs to you) - you are being ridiculous (and probably spending too much time on forums - because you have a seasonal activity)
   In a magazine or newspaper, one can turn the page, and nowadays one can zap the tv adverts - the problem with outside advertising is that it is imposed on the population.
    Insulting Paysages de France, which has the backing of many eminent personalities in France, is only likely to bring us new members.
[/quote]

So rather than getting laws changed then how about trying to get the existing laws enforced, after all if present laws don't get enforced work (as you pointed out yourself) then how do you expect new ones to be enforced and who is going to police them?

I think some people have too much time on there hands. Judging by the responses here many people don't really care or don’t care enough to do anything.

I don't really care which eminent people back the cause of Paysage de France although I suspect they are business men, politicians, intellectuals and alike. They probably live in Paris or other big cities and are way out of touch with ordinary people trying to earn a crust. I rather suspect they don't like the views from their holiday home spoilt by signs for the two weeks they spend in them, during the summer, down with the peasants in the country. God it’s getting like England, they will be trying to get laws to stop cows dumping on the road and cockerels crowing before 09:00 next. They really need to get a life and do something beneficial like create jobs etc.

I don’t think your organisation will be very welcome in my neck of the woods, I think the local farmers will be a bit upset if you take part of their income away by demanding they take the publicity signs down.

I to would like to know if these two organisational websites are one and the same and if so why they have different web addresses? It’s a question not yet answered.

 

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Quillan; You certainly can't erect signs in a field just because it belongs to you. The law of 1979 (very laxist, unfortunately and under enforced) states that outside of town borders (after when the town's name is barred) publicity hoardings or signs are not allowed except if they are advertising a commerce that is of specific interest to travellers (restaurants, garages etc) and only a maximum of 4 per commerce.
        A sign or hoarding  has the particularity of projecting into a public space without obtaining the permission of people subjected to its presence, so it's obvious that rules have to be elaborated to protect the invasion of that space that is the property of every citizen.

Well it may be obvious to you but not to me.

If I was a farmer offered hard cash to errect an advertising sign on my land  I'm not sure where 'the property of every citizen' would come into into it ? My land - my choice. Or are you saying that only ground level belongs to the famer, not the space above ?

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There's only one Paysages de France, no need for paranoia. I see there's some groundwork to do here!

  So, a little (true) story.  A  fruit  farmer in Montauban received  a grant for ripping out 'unproductive' apple trees a few years ago (read: apples that the  supermarket 'centrales d'achats' were offering too low a price for)  and he now has ten 4x3m  publicity panels on his land (at the town entrance) for which he receives around 1500 euros per year per panel.*  So, he took the hard cash that was offered (twice!) - and now,  the thousands of  local people who pass each day, and the tourists, are subjected to a continual garish publicity onslaught.

      The ad men are without scrupules.  Recently, a campaign by Intermarché infuriated local farmers: a photo of a  plucked chicken at 2 euros 35 a kilo and the message  'Pourquoi payer plus cher?' was plastered all over town (including on the farmer's panels). Of course, it's impossible to raise livestock in decent conditions (non battery etc) and sell at this price. The local farmers that  practise reasonable farming methods (and there are more and more each year)  would have liked to reply to the question, 'Pourquoi payer plus cher?' but of course, they had  no possibility of airing their point of view.

  Russethouse: Are you an anarchist? Don't you believe in the need for laws to protect people and the environment - in this case from visual pollution that they wish to  afflict on others? Outside of town boundaries and on ground visible from motorways and express routes advertising is banned in France - it's not me that says it - it's the law. Paysages de France points out to local authorities when the law is being broken and forces them to act to remove the offence. We have fought a year long battle to install a local by - law in Montauban that will ban advertising from the town's entrances and we are willing to stand up to any attacks from vested interests (I've already been threatened by an 'afficheur')  A  'règlement local de publicité' is now being elaborated in Montauban.  It will clean up the town if the ferocious  opposition of the multinational advertising companies ( for whom Montauban is just another little very profitable dot on their world map) who've sent their lawyers to oppose any attempt to put a limit on their exploits, can be overcome

 *see the film   'Montauban et les 400 panneaux' on www.bap.propagande.org or on  www.zaleatv.org

To join 'Paysages de France'       http://paysagesdefrance.free.fr

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