MILLIONS of motorists heading for a drive in the country this Bank Holiday weekend will have their views spoiled - and their road safety put at risk - by advertising billboards more than ten feet high.
This was the claim being made today by the Campaign to Protect Rural England when it published the results of a survey of what it calls a growth of billboards "spreading like a rash" across England.
Many of them are illegal, having been set up in fields alongside motorways and busy trunk roads used by weekend trippers "trying to get away from it all in England's finest landscapes," says the report.
In a survey restricted to such roads, CPRE investigators spotted 900 such hoardings - one for every three miles of route surveyed - and on some stretches, a motorists would pass one every three seconds.
Says CPRE planning campaigner Paul Miner: "For more than 50 years, planning controls have saved the English from the pox of outdoor advertising. This achievement is now in danger. Billboards and hoardings are mushrooming despite Government policy and regulations."