5 April 2010

We've missed a neat trick...

One of the defining features of London as compared with my home city of Hull , was the inclusion of part of the postcode on the street signs. However it goes a bit further than that - the street signs as a simple black writing on white background with red for the postcode are something of a design classic. That the design is adopted across various parts of London works on a higher level too - it unifies the area into being 'part of London' - it is both neat and tidy.

However I have no idea what's happened here in Lewisham. I noticed something like five different designs of signs on the junction of Manor Avenue/Ashby Road alone - in varying states of repair. And why is this a bit of mess - well we can just compare with neighbouring Bromley. When you cross the boundary you see instantly that the street signs have changed to white lettering on green...and it's consistent throughout the Borough. You know you're in Bromley - because of the signs.

It is pretty odd that Lewisham has a media team, corporate identity and the like that we spend good money on promoting and protecting but so little thought has been given to the very solid and permanent reminders to the the population that are placed on every street corner. The only common item on the streets that remind people they are in Lewisham are the bins.

I know it seems a tall order..but a simple and common street identity - rather like the one that Bromley appears to have developed - is a very simple and relatively cheap way of reminding people whether they are in Downham, Blackheath, Brockley or New Cross that they are in Lewisham. Certainly as Mayor I would insist on common standards for signs and street furniture - at the time they are renewed so it would not require us to waste good money.

1 comment:

Sue said...

yep, Lewisham needs to agree and adopt a streetscape design guide, which would cover things like bollards, bins and paving stones, as well as street signs. It's not rocket science, but it has been put off for years due to other projects. Sus Dev' ctte have been pushing for this and work is finally underway, we're told.