Friday, February 20, 2009

districtnk and all that

click photo to enlarge
Driving through Lincolnshire a few weeks ago I noticed a new roadside sign. It welcomed me to an area known as "districtnk" - that font, that spacing, those colours! I looked around with some trepidation, thinking that I'd entered a gulag-ridden outpost of the the old USSR at co-ordinates n,k on the map held by the Supreme Soviet in Moscow. However, when I saw the sign again I realised that North Kesteven District Council had "re-branded" itself - whatever that means - and this was their new welcome sign. Furthermore, it proclaimed that the district comprised "100 flourishing communities" (not 98, 99 or 101, but 100 - what are the chances?), and, because they knew that the new title was so opaque that it couldn't stand alone they spelled out the council name in full at the bottom. Gone was the old coat of arms, replaced by a symbol that made it look like they were sponsored by BP. I hope they didn't pay very much to the consultants who came up with all this because if it's supposed to show the council as progressive, modern, go-ahead, etc, for those of a certain age it suggests just the opposite. Perhaps the next step in the re-branding is for districtnk to start re-naming some of those "flourishing communities" after Soviet leaders, after which they'll move on to giving the schools numbers instead of names.

Signs, as a couple of my recent posts have suggested can be puzzling and fun. One notice I remember, that I didn't photograph but wish I had, was in an area of waste ground and said simply, "Danger! Deep Active Sludge" - succinct, memorable, and to me, completely impenetrable. Today's third and final (for now) offering was taken a couple of years ago near Bleasdale Tower in the Forest of Bowland, Lancashire. It was presumably erected by concerned parents who wanted the farm vehicles to drive with consideration. The way they expressed themselves certainly caught the eye, but I wonder if, in the longer term, it had the opposite effect to what was intended. I say that because, though I must have passed it a dozen times as I walked the area over the years, my experience was of children and dogs nowhere! Not a one, just like on the day I took this shot.

photograph & text (c) T. Boughen

Camera: Olympus E500
Mode: Aperture Priority
Focal Length: 21mm (42mm/35mm equiv.)
F No: f5
Shutter Speed: 1/80
ISO: 100
Exposure Compensation: 0 EV
Image Stabilisation: N/A