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Vale Pianos near Throckmorton is the victim of the short-sightedness of council policies says their MP Peter Luff.
He expressed his “outrage and amazement that after five years of lobbying by me and the company Worcestershire County and Wychavon District councils still won’t allow the firm a simple sign to tell customers where they are.”

His strong defence of the firm follows the threat of prosecution it received from Wychavon district council “for the crime of telling people where they are.”

Peter commented,

“I’m sure the councils can find a way forward to help this business succeed and comply with the difficult laws on signing of rural businesses. It’s time for Worcestershire to allow more brown signs for tourist attractions – after all, they are paid for by the business not the council, and they really help people realise what this wonderful county has to offer. I’m looking for an imaginative response from Wychavon and Worcestershire councils.”

Vale Pianos are a well-established, friendly, family run business, owned and managed by Linda and Craig Lowe, with over 25 years experience as piano technicians. They have over 100 pianos on display and customers travel from all over the country to visit the shop because of their reputation for sensible advice and excellent after sales service.

“The problem” says Peter Luff, “is that being on the road to Throckmorton they are a little way off the beaten track, to say the least, and customers often find it difficult to locate them.

“But the county council refuse to allow them a sign at the crossroads that would help those customers, and now the district council is threatening them with prosecution for putting up the kind of sign estate agents and local event organisers put up all the time to help people find their way.”

Peter has been working with Craig and Linda for many years now trying to persuade Worcestershire County Council to allow them a brown tourist sign. In the absence of an official sign, and with very poor signage for Throckmorton Road itself at the junction near Lower Moor, the Lowes have been putting up a small “Corex” poster or “A-board” to help customers. Recently Wychavon district council threatened them with prosecution for these signs.

“The prosecution threat was the final straw for me” said Peter Luff. “This is an excellent business that brings wider custom to the restaurants, cafes and bed & breakfast establishments of the area, but the councils have failed to support them – and are now actually attacking them.”


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