Two of Shaftesbury’s historic signposts will be renovated in a move that the Town Council hopes will please both residents and appeal to visitors.
The wooden fingerpost sign on St James Green has been deteriorating in recent years. The sign directing traffic towards Blandford or left into town, from its position on the Hawksdene Lane T-junction, was also in a state of disrepair.
Shaftesbury Town Council Business Manager Brie Logan told councillors that residents had contacted the Town Hall to advise that these historic markers required attention. “We have had a lot of feedback from our community about the history of the signposts, how they are part of our heritage and how we need to be proud of these signs,” said Brie. “One of our residents has a passion for this signpost and, for a number of years, has been keen to see it restored.”
Brie told councillors that obtaining consent for the work had ‘been a bit of a battle’. “There is no defined ownership. It’s been quite a challenge to get to this point. Dorset Highways has been working with the Dorset Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. I contacted them several months ago and they gave us permission to restore and renovate those signs,” she said.
One of the council’s own grounds team staff can now repair the signs, which are crafted from oak. “We found that there was a training workshop conducted by the AONB team in Blandford last month and we secured him a place on it. He is fully trained and raring to go on the restoration,” said Brie.
The renovation work will cost £600. That sum covers materials and 16 hours of the worker’s labour. Brie said the town’s Open Spaces Group was pleased by the outcome. The job is ‘one for a rainy day’ and should be completed over the winter in the council workshop. It isn’t practical to repair the signs in situ.