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Britain’s Digital Billboards Become Tribute to the Queen



As a mark of respect to the late Queen Elizabeth II, the UK’s major out-of-home media operators transformed their displays from advertising space into public commemoration, writes LBB’s Alex Reeves

Britain’s Digital Billboards Become Tribute to the Queen

It was announced yesterday at 6:30pm UK time that Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II had died, prompting outpourings of respect from across the globe. The advertising industry has also been paying its respects to Britain’s longest-reigning monarch, including tributes from advertising industry bodies and agencies.

On the streets across the country, many digital billboards have paused advertising in response, instead transforming public spaces into opportunities for remembrance and tribute.

From iconic spots such as London’s Piccadilly Circus to digital bus stops up and down the country, images of The Queen mark this moment in history.

Phil Hall, joint managing director, Ocean Outdoor UK said: “As soon as the sad news was announced yesterday, Ocean and indeed all the major UK OOH operators, replaced digital commercial advertising with a commemorative still to show our respect to The Queen. 

“Out of home is a public medium – we are integrated into the communities of the towns and cities of the UK and it is right that we use our reach to pay tribute to an extraordinary reign. We will continue to show this message for the remainder of the day, only reverting to a normal service at midnight tonight.

“The same will be true on the day of Her Majesty’s funeral – all advertising will be paused for 24 hours and replaced with a commemorative message. We are proud to use the power of our medium to pay our respects.”

Clear Channel issued the following statement: “As a sign of respect for the passing of Her Majesty The Queen, all Clear Channel UK digital displays were blacked out last night and will be displaying a commemorative message until 6am on Saturday 10th September in unity with other out of home media owners. As an industry, we deemed it important to use our public screens in an appropriate and thoughtful way during a time like this.”

JCDecaux issued the following statement: "It is with great sadness that we heard the news earlier today about the death of Her Majesty The Queen. The Queen ruled for longer than any other Monarch in British history, becoming a much loved and respected figure across the globe.

"JCDecaux UK would like to extend our sympathy to the Royal Family.

"We will not be posting any new advertising and will be pausing all commercial advertising on our digital screens today and for the next 24 hours. All our digital screens will show a tribute to Her Majesty The Queen - some will display the official portrait provided by Buckingham Palace shown below, while others will show tributes specially created by our landlord partners. We will also pause commercial digital advertising on the day of the state funeral and will be blanking all posters along the funeral route." 

Additional photos taken by our own roving reporter:

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LBB Editorial, Fri, 09 Sep 2022 13:18:19 GMT