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Local traders such as this florist are up in arms over proposals by the Town Council to charge them for displaying their wares outside their shop premises. The legislation allowing local authorities to charge a fee for issuing licenses allowing shops and cafes to display goods or put out tables and chairs and advertising signs has been in place for ten years but it's only now that it's being enforced. The traders, naturally, are not very happy about the charges, which is some cases could mount up to a couple of thousand Euro, at a time when many are struggling for survival.
The owner of this flower shop argued that her colourful displays of flowers adds to the attractiveness of the town.

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slhoornstra27-Feb-2010 01:36
It certainly does add beauty to the street, well captured, a beautiful shot. Not much makes sense in these parts, either. V
Peter Sussex24-Feb-2010 21:37
I believe the owner has right in this hard economic situation. When it's over, we have to rethink this question. The image is wonderful!
Michal Leszczynski24-Feb-2010 21:08
I feel spring in the air, beautiful composition and colors, very beautiful photo. V.
Kevin Chester24-Feb-2010 18:28
It looks great , these people are in their positions because they couldn't be the megalomaniac they wanted to be in a normal job. Sorry for ranting
globalgadabout24-Feb-2010 15:28
lovely exterior to this shop with the view further enriched by the charming does seem poor timing to add costs to small businesses in the current economic climate...V
Neal Nye24-Feb-2010 12:23
What a cheery shop. How could anyone resist buying something here? Unfortunately, taxes are necessary if we want good streets and police and fire protection. If not from this, then from something else.
Jason Anderson24-Feb-2010 03:16
Ok, new law...the council can pay us to put up their ugly campaign signs in public :o)
larose forest photos24-Feb-2010 02:43
A really beautiful photo. I tried to imagine this photo without all the wares displayed outside and it would be far bleaker. Similar stupid regulations are being enforced here now too. I don't get it! This is the sort of display that makes a street scene vibrant and welcoming!
Alan K24-Feb-2010 02:18
Doubtless the council will be none too keen to explain what they intend to spend the money ON. (If they're anything like some of the councils in these parts, themselves.) Having a hand in someone else's pocket always makes it easy, though. Lovely image, unlovely story.
LynnH24-Feb-2010 02:02
I think this shop looks charming, and it is most likely true that the flowers add to the attractiveness of the town. I believe quite a few cities are using this tactic to raise money. I love your photo!
Yvonne23-Feb-2010 23:53
What a pretty display, it should be the other way around, the Town Council should pay the shop owners to display their wares to help add to the ambiance of the town!
Barbara Heide23-Feb-2010 23:25
what a nice scent of spring!
tinkerb23-Feb-2010 23:16
Lovely picture sad story, I am convinced they will only be happy when they have usual chain of shops on every high street
laine23-Feb-2010 22:27
That the displays beautify some of the streets & save's councils bucketloads means little. It's a pretty scene & very inviting !!
Nora van Beek23-Feb-2010 22:21
This outdoor flower display is so very pretty and charming. I agree with that shop owner!
J. Scott Coile23-Feb-2010 22:18
Brightens even the dullest days...
Stewart Mitchell23-Feb-2010 22:18
....and the Council employee probably got a pat on the back for their enterprise in fundraising.....desparate time indeed! Fine image, Mairead, to illustrate the issue.
Valene23-Feb-2010 21:30
Gorgeous, cheerful image! V
Máire Uí Mhaicín23-Feb-2010 21:18
:) at Phillip, and he's probably right. I agree with the shopowner's argument: her display enlivens the footpath.
John Reynolds23-Feb-2010 21:14
I agree with the shop owner - the displays add to the attractiveness of the town!
pkocinski23-Feb-2010 21:12
And I thought it was just here in the USA (and New York State in particular) where they try to milk every cent out of us but it seems we are just following the rest of the "free" world!
bill friedlander23-Feb-2010 21:03
The flowers out on the sidewalk add to the charm of the place. Your council members should be taxed for walking by these shops.
Phillip Normanton23-Feb-2010 20:58
World's going mad... they'll be charging us for air next!
Patricia Kay23-Feb-2010 20:44
Beautiful image of this shop Mairead...It comes to us all as when we had a coffee shop in Stockholm we had to have Police permission and then pay for the amount of space used for the outside chairs and tables and has been that way for at least 20 years...all pay isnt it?...BV
Stephanie23-Feb-2010 20:39
Typical government antics! I'm sure that the shop owners are unhappy, but they will just pass the cost on to the customer....
A sweet photo Mairead. Looks like this shop has some beautiful things for sale! :-)
Johnny JAG23-Feb-2010 20:36
Typical council, all take and no give.
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