Fly-posting and illegal advertising signs

Illegal fly-posting, advertising signs and how to report them.

What is the difference between fly-posting and advertising signs?


Fly-posting is the act of attaching advertising posters, signs, flyers or stickers, without permission, on lampposts, trees, litter bins or any other structure on the highway (roads and footpaths), including staking them in the grass verge. 

Advertising signs

Advertising signs are free-standing, usually on the footpath outside or near commercial premises, such as a shop or a restaurant.   

These are not the same as brown tourism signs which are provided by the council following application. 

Is fly-posting illegal?

Yes, it is a criminal offence under the Highways Act 1980 and fly-posters can be reported to the council.

Fly-posting, such as posters and leaflets, can be an obstruction, nuisance or danger to road and footpath users , potentially causing a road traffic accident. We can remove fly-posting and the costs incurred in doing so can be charged to the person responsible for placing them. 

Fines and fixed penalty notices

We can also issue a fixed penalty notice of £75 per illegal item placed on the highway. If you have placed 5 posters, you would be fined £375.

Read more about fixed penalty notices and how to pay them.

When are advertising signs illegal?

If you deliberately obstruct or place anything on the public highway (roads and footpaths) that causes a danger to pedestrians and road users, you are committing a criminal offence under the Highways Act 1980.