The 10 existing green metal fingerposts are due to be removed later this month, to be replaced with an expanded wayfinding scheme following local input.
North Kesteven District Council says this expanded signage will better reflect all that Sleaford town centre offers since the current fingerposts were installed over 25 years ago, by highlighting heritage assets, shopping, leisure, attractions and other key aspects more effectively and across a wider area.
A full audit of the existing wayfinding signage in the town centre was carried out in 2018 by the three authorities, and a further review took place in autumn 2021.
It found the existing fingerposts are not fully reflective now of all there is to see and do in Sleaford town centre. Additionally, in some places information on the signage has become outdated and some signs have been damaged over time.
The audit work also found room for improvement in ensuring signage is accessible – considering for example the height of the existing signs, their readability and the limited information carried on them.
The new wayfinding signage will be designed and shaped using local input, with opportunities for residents, businesses and key stakeholders to share their thoughts in different ways including engagement by consultants Landmark.
Including time for engagement, it is expected to take around 12 weeks to finalise the new designs after which a contractor will be hired to install the new scheme. During these 12 weeks some temporary signage will be installed to help
test which types may work best while also helping ensure there is directional signage supporting Sleaford town centre during this period, and acting too as additional promotion of how to get involved in shaping the new signage.
The existing map information boards at the station and Marketplace will remain in place until the new scheme is installed.
Coun Richard Wright, Leader of North Kesteven District Council, said: “The existing wayfinding signs have served well and are a recognisable part of the fabric of Sleaford town centre. Since their installation over 25 years ago however much has changed, and so now is the time to revisit them and consider what the town centre and its businesses, occupants and visitors need most from such signage.
“We know good signage in the town centre is of major importance to our communities, with residents, stakeholders and businesses indicating recently in our Sleaford Masterplan engagement that it should be improved with local input.
“We hope to encourage as much participation as possible when we come to the engagement and design stage and together ensure this new, expanded wayfinding signage meets a range of needs and enables Sleaford town centre to stay a welcoming and flourishing place.”
Updates will be shared to help ensure communities and visitors alike are aware of the changes in addition to the opportunity to help shape the new signage.
Information will also be held on the council’s website at www.n-kesteven.gov.uk and through BusinessNK www.businessnk.co.uk, as well as updates through e-newsletters and on social media. You can sign up for e-newsletters at www.n-kesteven.gov.uk/stayconnected and follow on social media @northkestevendc and @businessnk
The project aligns with the Signage Strategy for Sleaford prepared by Lincolnshire County Council, North Kesteven District Council and Sleaford Town Council and adopted in 2018 following public consultation.
The actions agreed upon were for a full audit of existing signage to be undertaken and all non-essential information boards, wayfinding and finger post signs to be removed and new, essential ones to be installed.
The signage strategy also spells out the need for signage to be clear, accessible and relevant to a modern town, and gives a vision for signage which fully supports Sleaford as the place to be for residents, businesses and visitors.