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Markinch hotel hits out at Council after car logo is removed

Nicholas Russell MD of the Balbirnie House Hotel, with the hotel's Mercedes after it had its logo removed.

Nicholas Russell MD of the Balbirnie House Hotel, with the hotel's Mercedes after it had its logo removed.

 

Fife Council has come under fire in a row over the logos on hotels’ shuttle vehicles.

Nicholas Russell, MD of the Balbirnie House Hotel, contacted the Gazette after he received instruction from the Council that all hotels which use a vehicle for guest transfers would have to have their logos removed.

“On this basis, our industry colleagues, such as those at the Old Course Hotel in St Andrews, are going to have to strip all their vehicles of all logos.

“We think this suggestion is totally ludicrous.”

Councillor Bob Young, chairman of Fife Council’s regulation and licensing committee, defended the decision, saying: “As this is a vehicle which is being used to transport guests, the owners are required by law to have a private hire vehicle licence.

“The licensing system is all about ensuring customer and driver safety. There is a longstanding Council policy governing the licensing of private hire vehicles, which states that signage is not permitted on private hire cars.

“We have had several discussions with Balbirnie about their application to clarify matters with them.”

But Mr Russell responded, saying: “We’d like to say in reply that we are totally astonished that Fife Council has not been able to find methodology to enable Fife hotels to continue to have a set of logos on vehicles which are used for guest transfers.

“Clearly, Balbirnie House’s Mercedes has been a precedent in the decision-making process.”

Markinch councillor John Beare slammed the Council’s move, saying he was “astonished”.

“I’m not convinced that the Council has interpreted the relevant act correctly,” he said. “Who would confuse a car with a hotel logo for a taxi?

“Frankly, it reads like a kind of bureaucratic madness that gives councils a bad name.”

 

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