A-Board signs

A-boards located on the public road network, including the footway, require permission.

Requirement for Permission

A-boards located on the public road network, including the footway, require permission. Legislation requires separate consent to be obtained from both the relevant Roads Authority and the Argyll and Bute Planning Authority. Where the footway is on a Trunk Road the relevant Roads Authority is Transport Scotland. 

Roads Authority Consent must be obtained before an application for Advertisement Consent will be considered by the Planning Authority.

A-Board requirements

  • Be positioned at the rear of the footway (abutting the shop frontage)
  • Only 1 A-board permitted per shop premises to prevent clutter
  • Minimum footway width of 1.8m required between board and carriageway
  • Must be located directly outside the premises the board relates to
  • Businesses without a frontage are not eligible for an A-Board
  • Present no hazard to pedestrians or wheelchair users (e.g. sharp edges, protruding nails or moving or rotating signs which could injure children)
  • Be no more than 0.6m wide
  • Be no more than 1m in height
  • Be sufficiently stable so as not to be easily moved or blown over
  • Not reduce visibility for road users at a junction, access or bend
  • Not obscure any road signs
  • Be covered by appropriate Public Liability Insurance
  • A-Boards must be removed from pavement areas when the shop premises are closed
  • Businesses are encouraged to group together and use "column-style" signage for sign-posting and promotion wherever possible

Designing your sign or advert

Argyll and Bute Council will seek to ensure that advertisements and signs are kept to a minimum and that they relate well to the function and use of the building or structure on which they are displayed. All advertisements should be carefully designed so that the appearance and character or the locality or area in which they are situated is preserved. Public safety is also at the forefront of the decision. 

How to Apply

Application for Roads Consent

An application for roads authority consent for the placement of an A-board or similar object must be obtained before the application can be made to the planning department.

Application for Advertisement

Once the relevant roads authority has provided consent an application for advertisement can applied for via the below channels.

Please note - these links take you to the national ePlanning portal, where you can apply online or download paper copies of the form. Further guidance on using the portal, including fees, is available on our Make a Planning Application page


Pre Application Advice Service

Pre application advice is an informal advice service provided by the planning authority on a variety of planning related topics including advertisement consent. You can apply for pre-application advice online here.

Enforcement of Unauthorised Signs

The council must consider each case on its own merits and decide upon the most appropriate solution. Where an unauthorised advert has been identified, the Council will proceed with one or more of the following options.

  • Informal contact with the advert owner
  • Retrospective Application
  • Advertisement Enforcement Notice
  • Advertisement Discontinuance Notice
  • Removal of signs within the Roads Corridor or Pavements

Further information on each course of action can be found in section 15 of the Advertisement and Signage Policy

Need to contact us?

Argyll and Bute Roads Department

Mid Argyll, Kintyre and Islay
Manse Brae, Lochgilphead, PA31 8RD

Oban and Lorn:
Jackson Quarry, Millpark Road Depot, Oban, PA34 4NH

Helensburgh and Lomond
The Helensburgh and Lomond Civic Centre, 38 East Clyde Street, Helensburgh G84 7PG

Bute and Cowal
Milton House, Dunoon PA23 7DX

Roads Customer Services Line: 01546 605514

Argyll and Bute Planning Department

Mid Argyll, Kintyre and Islay
1A Manse Brae, Lochgilphead, PA31 8RD

Oban, Lorn and the Isles
Municipal Buildings, Albany Street, Oban PA34 4AW

Helensburgh and Lomond
The Helensburgh and Lomond Civic Centre, 38 East Clyde Street, Helensburgh G84 7PG

Bute and Cowal
Milton House, Milton Avenue, Dunoon PA23 7DU

Planning Customer Services Line: 01546 605518

Frequently Asked Questions

Q. Can I apply for roads consent and advertisement consent together?
A. No, roads consent must be obtained before an advertisement application can be made to the planning authority.

Q. Can the Council recommend agents to complete the applications on behalf of the advertisement owner? 
A. No, the Council cannot make recommendations in order to maintain a neutral position with agents.

Did you find what you were looking for?

Why wasn't this information helpful

Limit to 250 characters.