New London mayor Boris Johnson is to slice advertising budgets for the Greater London Authority, including the Metropolitan Police and the Transport for London (TfL), to fund the extra community police officers he promised in his election manifesto.
It is not thought that the move will start any agency reviews, but it will mean fewer high profile advertising campaigns, such as the Met Police’s Operation Trident, which aim to fight gun crime and is created by Miles Calcraft Briginshaw Duffy.
The move to curb advertising spend will also lead to less publicity for schemes such as the congestion charge, recycling and anti-drugs drives than under former mayor Ken Livingstone.
In the past, the Conservative Party has criticised the “excessive use of public spending” on such campaigns.
It is not clear how the slashing of the GLA’s estimated £2m advertising spend will fund the extra 440 police community support officers Johnson has pledged to patrol buses and Tube stations.
The roster agencies for GLA include Farm Communications, Spirit Advertising and WCRS. MCBD handles the advertising for the Met Police, the budgets for which are allocated by the London mayor, according to a GLA spokeswoman.
Unlike Livingstone, Johnson has decided to exercise his right as London mayor to chair the Metropolitan Police Authority.
The new mayor has already met Met Police commissioner Sir Ian Blair to discuss his plans.