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Stage school principal slams Camden Council for ‘duplicitous’ advertising plans

Prof Gavin Henderson. Prof Gavin Henderson.

Thursday, September 4, 2014
9:30 AM

The principal of a prestigious stage school in Swiss Cottage has described the council’s plans to sell digital advertising on its buildings as “extraordinarily duplicitous”.

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Prof Gavin Henderson, of the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama, criticised the move in the light of Camden Council’s decision last year to ban advertising hoardings outside the school in Eton Avenue.

The school, whose alumni include Sir Laurence Olivier, Harold Pinter and Jennifer Saunders, fought the council’s decision to remove two hoardings in Avenue Road on aesthetic grounds but ultimately lost on appeal.

The school had received £150,000 annually from selling advertising on the hoardings which it donated to youth projects in Camden.

Prof Henderson said: “They have an overarching policy about digital hoardings and the general line is they are going to remove them across the borough.

“It seems clear where they have a financial interest they take a slightly more generous attitude. It seems extraordinarily duplicitous.

“They are subscribing to the argument that we were using to keep our hoardings. Our argument was these are extremely difficult times, any money we can make to negate government funding cuts is important.

“I see this as an opportunity. We would want to return to the issue, they are setting a precedent.”

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