Reporter says nail salon sign must go

Thursday November 23rd 2023

USA Nails on Dalkeith High Street

The sign above USA Nails Salon on Dalkeith High Street.

Written by Local Democracy Reporter, Marie Sharp

A nail salon boss who repainted her pink shop front grey after planners objected has lost her fight to save her ‘expensive’ red, white and blue sign above the door.

Cuong Nguyen of USA Nails, on Dalkeith High Street, had argued that the sign for her business had been expensive and replacing it would be a significant expense.

However her appeal to Scottish Ministers against Midlothian Council’s order to remove it has been rejected after the Scottish Government Reporter ruled it was ‘inappropriate’ in the town’s conservation area.

Midlothian Council officers ordered the business to change the colour of its frontage, which was painted bright pink, and replace its red, white and blue sign, on the Category C Listed building.

The shop front was repainted by Ms Nguyen appealed against the order to remove the sign telling the Reporter: “I had to wait so long to get it and it is expensive for a new (business) owner like me so I would be really grateful if I could keep it.”

In her ruling, the Reporter said that while she appreciated the additional costs to the salon, it was not enough to change her view on it.

She said: “I acknowledge the financial implications for the appellant, I am not convinced that the cost of and time involved in removing or replacing the signage is reasonable grounds to allow inappropriate signage in this sensitive and prominent location.

“The fascia signage is modern in terms of style and material, with the lettering in a modern font, in bright, primary colours. I consider that this style and colour contrasts negatively with the traditionally designed shopfront, now in a muted colour.”

Ms Nguyen was given three months to remove the signage and vinyl graphics in the shop windows which were also deemed inappropriate.

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