Firm charged group for signs – then offered a grant for cost

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A residents’ group asked to pay £50 by Sheffield Council highways contractor Amey to hire road closed signs for a street party was then invited to bid for a grant – by the same company.

Viv Lockwood, secretary of Banner Cross Neighbourhood Group, said: “We wanted to borrow two ‘road closed’ signs and four cones for the festival last month, just as we always have in the past from the council at no charge.

“As a final irony, we were sent a letter inviting us to apply for a grant under its ‘Amey Community Partnership’ programme.

“I don’t think I need to add a comment.”

The letter inviting Mr Lockwood’s group to bid said: “We are offering donations of up to £250 to support a range of grass roots community based-projects.”