Chapelfield shopping centre set to allow photos
A Norwich pensioner who was surrounded by police shortly after taking photos at Chapelfield shopping centre has welcomed a move to allow pictures to be taken there.
Howard Temperley was told to move on from nearby St Stephen's Street by police last Christmas Eve, after security at the shopping centre had told him to leave.
Mr Temperley, 78, who takes scenic photos to be used as Christmas cards, said he felt like a terrorist, but now the company that owns the shopping centre is reviewing its policy.
Mr Temperley, of Newmarket Road, said that he thought the company was 'finally being sensible'.
The former professor of American Studies at the University of East Anglia said: 'It seems to me a welcome change of policy. I really don't understand the policy that they had before.
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'I think the anti-terrorism laws rather got out of hand and I think this confuses the security people more than anybody.'
Capital Shopping Centres (CSC), which owns Chapelfield, is to change policy across its 11 UK shopping centres after a campaign was started when security guards challenged a man taking a photo of his own four-year-old daughter in Glasgow's Braehead centre. Chris White was so outraged about being questioned by police that he started the campaign to press shopping centres to change their policies.
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A spokesman for CSC said that the policy would be changed at the company's 11 stores, including other sites in Cardiff, Manchester, Nottingham and Newcastle.
She said: 'The policy change will allow family and friends to take photos in the malls. However, for the safety and enjoyment of our shoppers, we will reserve the right to challenge suspicious behaviour.'
Previously, the policy was that permission had to be obtained before any photos could be taken.
It is expected that photography will be allowed in the centre by the end of the week.
The Mall in Norwich refused to comment on the subject or clarify their policy.
Nick Spencer manager of Market Gates Shopping Centre, Great Yarmouth, said they ask people to explain why they are taking photographs.
He said: 'If it is just a parent taking a picture of their child on a ride then there isn't a problem. But we do have to be mindful of terrorism and ask why someone is taking a picture of our building.'
Dan Poitras, manager of the Britten Centre in Lowestoft, said as a general view no photographs were allowed on terrorism grounds and security guards would ask people not to take pictures.
However, the centre manager added that if it looked like people were taking family photographs then staff could 'play it by ear' and use an element of common sense.