Gloucester man's mission to show inconsistent signs
SPELLING and grammar is a divisive issue.
Some insist the English language should be upheld in its proper glory – others don't give two hoots.
But most agree that at least some consistency would be desirable.
Although not, it seems, whoever is responsible for these road signs.
Gents, come in to Earl's & Co and enjoy a haircut and finish, glass of whisky and a shoeshine for £18.50
Terms: Later and earlier appointments available upon request
Contact: 01242 504887
Valid until: Tuesday, December 31 2013
Maybe the full stop and spacebar on their computer keyboard broke, or maybe confusion just took over.
When Mark Ellis, pictured, moved to Abbeydale 13 years ago, he spotted the road near his house was labelled both Blakehill Way and Blake Hill Way. It niggled him.
Then a friend mentioned the same issue with Trier Way – which is called Trierway on another sign in the road.
And since then, he has come across even more silly signage.
Coney Hill Road is also Coneyhill Road and The Holly Grove is also The Hollygrove.
It might only be a small full stop for some, but the difference between St James' and St. James' was enough for Mark to add that road to his blacklist too.
The 52-year-old school business manager said: "It is irritating because it should right. Spotting them has kept me amused.
"Whichever way you look at it, it is sloppy workmanship and there could be more out there."
Early this year debate raged across the country as to whether councils should be using proper apostrophes in road name signs.
But Mark said: "I am not a stickler for grammar and I never have been, when it comes to apostrophes I don't always get it right. It's quite funny really – it shows we're all human."
Hugh Worsnip, former chief reporter for the Gloucester Citizen, has always been puzzled by the inconsistency of road names because he believes someone must hold an internal database.
The 70-year-old spokesman for Gloucester Civic Trust said: "I suppose the first purpose of a road name is to convey meaning to the driver and I don't think it matters on a road sign whether an apostrophe is lost or not.
"But place names should be spelt right and consistency is needed.
"I don't think drivers will end up getting lost because of signs like this, but it is the inconsistency not the spelling that is the problem.
"It was only the Victorian era that invented spelling really. Before that, Shakespeare and the likes could not spell at all, but the Victorian's perceived we needed it."
A spokesman for Gloucester City Council said: "New road names are the responsibility of council officers in consultation with the member for regeneration, ward councillors, the developer and Royal Mail and, where appropriate, Quedgeley Parish Council.
"New road signs are erected by the developer to council and department specifications. After 12 months the council will then take on responsibility for maintenance of street nameplates for adopted streets.
"The city council has received no complaints about street names or existing signs in the last 12 months. We have had enquiries regarding additional signage on Kingsway.
"There are 1,492 roads in Gloucester.
"We have one road in the city with an apostrophe. We do not have a specific policy except it be grammatically correct.
"However the council is currently drafting a new policy regarding street signage."