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Volume 130: debated on Thursday 31 March 1988

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To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what studies his Department has made of French signpost practice on (a) motorways and (b) other roads regarding (i) sites of tourist interest and ill) the availability and quality of hotel accommodation; and what representations he has had on future signposting in the United Kingdom.

On signing matters generally, we are in close touch with other member countries of the European conference of ministers of transport. We are aware of practices in France in relation to signing of tourist attractions and hotels. We have received a variety of representations about signing in the context of the review of directional signs which we completed last year. A copy of the report is available in the Library.In the light of this review we are conducting an experiment in Kent to assess the benefits to be derived from a limited amount of hotel signing on the highway. We have to balance in all this the need of travellers for information against road safety considerations (too many signs are a distraction to the motorist), and the damage to amenity which would arise if there came to be a clutter of signs on the highway.