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Last Updated: Thursday, 14 June 2007, 17:15 GMT 18:15 UK
Lap dancer advert angers council
Lap dancing advert in Surrey field
The painted advert is weatherproof for up to four weeks
A marketing company is facing a fine of up to 2,500 after the silhouette of a naked lap dancer appeared on a field beneath a busy flight path in Surrey.

The 100,000 sq ft advert, promoting a lap dancing website, has been painted under a Gatwick Airport flight path.

Tandridge District Council said the advert was illegal and had been painted without proper planning permission.

Sports Media Gaming (SMG) has refused to get rid of it, and claimed it was "operating within its rights".

If the council own the rights to the airspace then we would be happy to hear from them
Steven Johnson, Flightpath Media

The sports marketing agency said the advert, bearing the logo "anytime, anyplace, anywhere", could only be seen from the air, and was therefore not subject to council planning regulations.

Steven Johnson, commercial director of Flightpath Media, a subsidiary of SMG, said the advert had already generated thousands of pounds of advertising and insisted the firm was not breaking the law.

"We are operating quite within our rights. We produce adverts that are only visible by people in the air.

"If the council own the rights to the airspace then we would be happy to hear from them," he said.

The company rents privately owned land from local farmers and landowners and uses pitch marking dyes to paint its designs, which are weatherproof for up to four weeks.

'Advertising consent'

The council has written to the company advising it to remove the painting or face legal action.

If found guilty the firm faces a fine of up to 2,500 plus an extra 250 for each day the advert remains in place.

A council spokeswoman said: "They have not applied to the council for advertising consent.

"Generally people need to have advertising consent before displaying adverts."

However, she said it could also apply for planning permission retrospectively.

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