Picture credit: Kevin Price

Kevin Price, a keen photographer and a Labour councillor in Cambridge, has branded the Grand Arcade’s photography policy ‘bizarre’ and said he may take the matter up with council colleagues.

Councillor Price, 55, said he had visited the privately run centre on 13 August to take a few shots as part of ‘366′ – a photography project that involves taking pictures, daily, during the leap year and posting them on Facebook.

Speaking to Amateur Photographer (AP), Price said a staff member told him pictures of the centre’s structure were prohibited and threatened to throw him out if he persisted.

‘It’s so over the top, ridiculous… and annoying. I had been out with my Canon EOS 550D taking a few shots of ceilings,’ said Price.

This was the first time he had taken photos in the shopping centre.

The photography enthusiast, who serves as councillor in the King’s Hedges ward of the city, told AP that he could see no signs warning him against such photography.

‘I absolutely love getting out and about with my camera – anywhere [now] apart from shopping centres,’ added Price, who works as a porter at one of the University colleges in the city.

The Grand Arcade’s general manager, John O’Shea, told AP: ‘Grand Arcade has a no photography policy in place to ensure the interests of public safety are upheld at all times.

‘The retail shopping centre is private property and has a duty of care to its retailers, which have individual policies relating to the use of their images, shop fronts and signage.

‘Should members of the public wish to take photographs within Grand Arcade, the centre is happy to review each request on an individual basis with prior notice.

‘It should also be noted that we do look to use our discretion with regards to people taking pictures of their friends and family, Christmas decorations and in-centre events.’

The Grand Arcade is a partnership between Cambridge City Council, Cambridgeshire County Council and private companies, according to a press release issued by planners in September 2004.

There has been a mixed reaction from locals since an article first appeared in Cambridge News.