13.1 The primary objective of this guidance is to achieve a balance between assisting tourists, minimising environmental intrusion and maintaining safety (by preventing an overload of information on a sign). The driver should be able to safely read and understand the information on the sign whilst passing at normal speed. This chapter is aimed primarily at sign designers and supplements information given in LTN 1/94 [7] and in Chapter 7 of the Traffic Signs Manual [6].

Destination Legends

13.2 When following the principles in LTN 1/94 on the maximum number of destinations that it is advisable to include on any one sign, it should be borne in mind that tourist destinations often have longer names than other destinations and this will be a constraint on the number of destinations that can sensibly be included.

13.3 Lengthy tourist destination names will require larger signs. The wording may have to be shortened or abbreviated at the discretion of the trunk road authority. If the name cannot be shortened, this will further constrain the maximum number of destinations that can be included on a sign.

13.4 The maximum number of words permitted on a single destination sign shall be four.

13.5 The number of lines of text describing a single tourist destination is limited to two.

13.6 The maximum number of lines of text on any sign is limited to eight.


13.7 The x-height of legends on any sign must always be appropriate for the 85th percentile approach speed of private cars at the proposed sign location. Drivers must be able to read and understand the signs at normal approach speeds otherwise the signs could present a hazard. Therefore, the guidance in LTN 1/94 (Appendix A, paragraph 2) shall be followed even in environmentally sensitive areas where there can be pressure to reduce the x-height even further than that permitted in LTN 1/94. On composite signs, the x-heights for all destinations must always be the same.

Composite signs

13.8 Where more than one tourist destination is signed in advance of a junction, they should be incorporated together on one set of signs. No more than one tourist sign or composite sign shall be permitted on any approach to a junction. Where there are more tourist destinations than can be accommodated on the signing, the trunk road authority will make the final decision on which destinations are to be signed in consultation with VisitScotland.


13.9 In accordance with LTN1/94 (paragraph 3.3.1), "Brown tourist attraction panels shall not be incorporated on motorway signs on the approach to intermediate junctions. Where tourist attraction signing is approved, separately mounted brown signs shall be provided, normally at _ and _ miles in advance of junctions. Brown panels may be provided on the advance direction signs on exit slip roads and where the motorway ends at a roundabout as an alternative to separately mounted brown signs should space constraints preclude the use of separate signs. Direction signs indicating tourist attractions are not provided on motorways."

13.10 The sequence of advance direction signs (ADSs) observed by the driver on a motorway should normally be as follows:

(a) Main ADS (1 mile from junction)
(b) Tourist ADS
(c) Main ADS (1/2 mile from junction)
(d) Tourist ADS
(e) Final main ADS

13.11 The two tourist ADSs must be identical and must be to Diagram 2924 or 2927 (see Chapter 11).

13.12 Tourist ADSs to Diagram 2924 and 2927 do not include the distance to the junction.

13.13 The use of distances to destinations on motorway tourist signs is not permitted by TSRGD [5] (except on Diagram 2926 — ‘Junction ahead from a motorway exit slip road’).

All-purpose trunk roads

13.14 Tourist signing shall, wherever possible, be kept separate from trunk road direction signing (green and white signs). Brown tourist attraction panels shall only be used in exceptional circumstances where space constraints preclude the provision of separate signing. Sign designers should note that only tourist destinations and tourist information centres should be included on tourist signs. Local towns and other local destinations should always be signed using the appropriate coloured direction signing.

13.15 Tourist signs on all-purpose roads should normally include the distance to the destination.

13.16 A flag type direction sign should normally be preceded by an ADS.

13.17 Tourist destinations with direct access from an all-purpose trunk road may not need signing if the entrance is visible and identifiable from a distance that allows vehicles to approach it safely. However, in many cases, especially on high speed roads with a speed limit of 50mph or more, ADSs followed by flag-type direction signs at the entrance may be needed to guide traffic safely to the destination.

13.18 If a tourist destination is closed for part of the year, consideration should be given to the use of variable signs (i.e. flap-type or rotating plank) so that the legend is visible only during the period when the destination is open. Diagram 2209 allows the distance to be varied to "CLOSED" or additionally to show the opening times (see Figure 13.1). The operation and maintenance of such signs shall be carried out by the trunk road authority with costs borne by the tourist destination operator(s) within the initial provision.

Sign locations

13.19 The trunk road authority shall determine the location of all tourist signs within the trunk road and motorway network.

13.20 Where the trunk road authority considers that a proposed tourist sign conflicts with the interests of road safety due to its size and/or location, it reserves the right to refuse the application.

Sign protection

13.21 Signs may require additional safety fencing. Reference should be made to the current standard for road restraint systems.

Figure 13.1 — Example of variable sign to diagram 2209

Figure 13.1 — Example of variable sign to diagram 2209

Figure 13.1 — Example of variable sign to diagram 2209