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2. General principles

2.1 Eligibility for signs does not imply a right to signs. It may be necessary to turn down a request for a sign at a given location because of siting difficulties or where the number of destinations signed at a junction would be excessive. The maximum number of destinations that a driver can read and understand on a sign whilst driving is six. If long names are used or the road carries fast-moving traffic – generally ‘A’ class roads – this number will be lower.

2.2 Long names on signs are difficult for motorists to read. The attraction name which appears on the sign should not be more than three or four words long. Only one tourist symbol will be allowed for each attraction.

2.3 In conservation areas and areas of special landscape significance, the impact of signs on the environment will be an important factor. In urban areas, there will often be insufficient space to erect additional signs or add tourist destinations to existing signs.

2.4 The County Council reserves the right to alter, reposition or remove a sign:

  • to accommodate another sign;
  • because the establishment no longer qualifies for signs;
  • if it becomes known that details included in the application were falsely claimed.

2.5 The design of signs is the responsibility of the County Council in its capacity as highway authority. 

2.6 Signing to an establishment may start from:

  • either the nearest main road, usually an ‘A’ or ‘B’ road, though in some cases the nearest ‘C’ class road may be more appropriate;
  • or the point where the route to an establishment differs from the signed route into the nearest town or village.

2.7 Establishments which are located directly on ‘A’ or ‘B’ roads may not always need signs, especially if the entrance is visible and identifiable from a distance. Consideration may be given to signing an attraction from the nearest ‘A’ road junction if it would otherwise be difficult for drivers to find the establishment and the facility is of significant value to the local tourist market. In a few exceptional cases it may be necessary to sign an attraction more extensively, either because it is very important or for traffic management reasons.

2.8 Public houses, hotels, cafes and restaurants situated on ‘A’ roads will not normally be signed. Exceptions will only be considered when the establishment is located within one mile of a junction with another ‘A’ road and there are benefits to the road user in the establishment being signed.

2.9 In the case of small attractions in rural areas, signing will only be provided either within the village in which it is located or from the nearest village.