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Rethink of Spinnaker Tower redesign after bad reaction

The Spinnaker Tower £3.5m sponsorship plans to be 'revised' Photo:
The Spinnaker Tower as it looks now Credit: PA

The new sponsorship branding plans announced for Portsmouth's Spinnaker Tower on Friday are to be revised after a bad reaction from the general public. The £3.5 million deal between the city council and the firm 'Emirates' would have seen Portsmouth's famous landmark, currently white, repainted in red and white to advertise the commercial brand.

However there was a negative reaction from members of the public, with a petition against the change attracting more than 9,000 signatures over the weekend. Red and white are the football colours of Portsmouth's neighbouring rival city of Southampton.

The Leader of the Council, Councillor Donna Jones, said she was 'extremely worried and concerned about the strong public response' and had taken the public reaction into account - leading to the request for alternative proposals from the public.

Under the original redesign plans the Spinnaker Tower would have been repainted red & white

Portsmouth City council is asking local residents for ideas on how the branding could be changed. Anyone with feedback can email tower@portsmouthcc.gov.uk with their suggestions by 9am tomorrow - Tuesday 9th June. The council said the tight deadline was to allow for the sponsorship deadlines to be met, so that the deal can become 'live' by mid-July.

The deal is worth £3.5 million over five years, plus additional marketing benefits bringing the total up to £5 million. The council said the money would be reinvested into essential council services.

"As Leader of the City Council I have been extremely worried and concerned about the strong public response to the design of the Spinnaker Tower following the announcement of the Emirates deal.

"I am passionate about this city; I was born here and have lived here all my life. Everything I do as Leader of the City Council is to further this city and improve the living conditions for the residents. Likewise I love Portsmouth Football Club, the Royal Navy and our heritage. I fully understand people's feelings about 'blue' being the city's colour and the city emblem.

"That’s why I have read, listened, and taken on board all the comments that have been tweeted, emailed, and sent to me on Facebook and other social media. I only want to do what is best, and more importantly so do Emirates as our new partners who are keen to have a strong relationship with the city.

"I am pleased to advise that after working with Emirates over the weekend, and having spoken to Mark Catlin, chief executive of Portsmouth FC, and other key stakeholders, we are working up a new design for the Tower. The design will reflect the city's heritage."

– Cllr Donna Jones, Leader, Portsmouth City Council

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