Published on 15th November 2013

image of new sign design

Cheltenham town centre is soon to benefit from new pedestrian signage that will make understanding directions and destinations much easier.

The new ‘wayfinding’ project will see both finger-post signage and simple maps with clear graphics. As well as showing pedestrian routes, the mapping will also identify bus and strategic cycle routes.

The aim is to help tourists and encourage more people to walk, cycle and take buses to and from the town centre, which is hoped in turn, will bolster the town centre economy.

Similar designs are already used successfully in a number of historic towns and cities, including Oxford, Cambridge, Norwich, Durham, London and Bristol.

Wilf Tomaney, townscape manager, says: “The new signs will be much more user friendly, and will also benefit the wider community. Cheltenham has a number of ‘fringe’ shopping areas which are considered difficult to find from the town centre, for example Montpellier, High Street West End, Suffolks and Bath Road. These areas should see significant benefits from the signage and traders are extremely supportive of the project.”

Councillor Andrew McKinlay, cabinet member for built environment, says: “This approach to signing is an effective way of helping pedestrians find their way around towns. It is by far the most cost-effective intervention which local authorities can make to bolster their town centres.

“We’re delighted to see the new signage coming to Cheltenham as it will be of great benefit to the town centre and the surrounding areas.”

The project has been developed through a working group which includes members from Cheltenham Borough Council, Gloucestershire County Council, traders and interest groups.

Designs are now well advanced and £115,000 funding has been secured through the County Council's Local Sustainable Transport Fund (LSTF) which will enable the implementation of phase one by March 2014. In phase one, new signage will be put up throughout the town centre, including the Promenade and High Street.

For press enquiries contact:
Laura Carter, communications officer, telephone 01242 264154, email [email protected]. Visuals of the new signage are available on request. Please contact Laura Carter on 01242 264154.

The project aims to help deliver the LSTF objectives to increase walking, cycling and bus travel to and from the town centre as well as the Cheltenham Development Task Force objective to bolster the town centre economy.

The existing signage is considered
•    difficult to read with gold lettering on black background, compounded by the height of many signs
•    insufficiently clear in terms of direction
•    difficult to change when destinations alter
•    lacking in information about the destinations.

The project is likely to have three phases with funding yet to be found for the next two phases.