Scottish Borders Council considers road safety plans

Scottish Borders Council has said it is considering plans to ban some street signage as part of a wider strategy to improve road safety.

The proposals include issuing permits for outdoor tables and chairs to ensure they were placed in ‘sensible’ locations and establishing ‘tolerance zones’ for some signs in certain conditions.

The news comes after a report into the use of signage in towns across the area recommended that councillors did not ban unauthorised signs, banners, posters, sandwich boards and other obstructions.

It suggested that the council create ‘no banner zones’ for areas where signs could pose a road safety concern. However, unauthorised signage for commercial events and organisations would be banned completely, unless an application for formal planning consent was made.

Councillor Gordon Edgar said: "The council recognises the pressures on local businesses but it also acknowledges that unauthorised signage erected in areas which could distract motorists and obstruct pedestrians presents significant safety issues."

Edgar added: "We are keen to encourage a 'café culture' on High Streets throughout the region and acknowledge that good quality tables and chairs can enhance a townscape.

"However, it is important that tables and chairs are placed in sensible and safe locations, do not diminish the look of town centres and do not impact on pedestrian safety, particular those who are disabled."