Pillars of the community


Sir, I read with interest Derek Scally’s article (Berlin Letter, March 11th) on that city’s advertising pillars, introduced to rid the city of “guerrilla advertising”.

On a recent visit to Namibia, once a short-lived German colony and known as German South-West Africa, I came across the last of these pillars in Swakopmund, the quintessential German colonial town. The tidy Germans brought their tidy habits (and their excellent beer) with them. Judging by Derek Scally’s report and the accompanying photograph, the only difference I could detect was that, at four metres high, the German version is much taller than its African brother.

Like their Berlin counterparts, the local municipality in Swakopmund is now campaigning to preserve these fine examples of street architecture.

But these pillars would never work in Ireland. Why? Because we stick posters on every available flat or curved surface wall, builders’ hoardings, and rubbish bins. I have even seen them on signposts. Location doesn’t matter.

Try doing that in Germany– or Namibia! – Yours, etc,


Castleknock, Dublin 15.