Shop signage on a listed building opposite the Guildhall has been called “unacceptable” by Worcester Civic Society.

Illuminated signs have appeared on Worcester Phone Care in High Street, along with banners advertising vapes and a same-day phone repair service.

But the civic society says these represent an “alien feature within its setting,” as the shop is in a Grade II listed building and sits within Worcester’s ‘Historic City’ conservation area.

It is also opposite the Grade I listed Guildhall.

“The civic society would consider by virtue of its siting and design that the signage would represent an alien feature within its setting, unacceptably detracting from the setting of the host and neighbouring listed buildings,” it said.

“These factors in our view are harmful to the visual qualities that make up the conservation areas characteristics.”

The society’s Chris Evans said: “When something doesn’t look right, there’s a reason why, usually. People have a sense of when something doesn’t look right.”

“There is definitely a precedent elsewhere in Worcester on the high street of enforcement action being taken.

“There are two things that can be considered - the impact on amenity and on highways.

“Generally it’s the amenity standpoint that is the most relevant. Here, it is a Grade II listed building in a conservation area and the council will take all of this into account.”

Mr Evans said the city council doesn’t currently have a shop front design guide but did up until 2016.

“While not enforceable it probably is still adhered to,” he said, “and the guide says illuminated signs are only really necessary for nighttime economy businesses.

“You have to consider the fabric of the building, too. Drilling into it to put up signs can cause some damage.”

A Worcester City Council spokesperson said: “The city council is aware of the signs and alterations to the shop front that have appeared at the Phone Care shop in High Street. We are currently investigating the matter.”

Worcester Phone Care owner Hafiz Atif said he wasn't previously aware of the property's listed building status, but after receiving an email would be taking down the offending signage in the next couple of days.