BEAR Scotland’s decision to highlight the first exit on the A90 into Forfar at the Lochlands junction with a sign for Arbroath has been described by Angus Councillor Glennis Middleton as “complete and utter nonsense.”
The Forfar member is “absolutely appalled” by the road network company’s use of signs on the A90, both north-bound and south-bound, and has pledged to raise the issue with the local authority’s director of infrastructure services in a bid to have the signs improved.
The Dispatch contacted BEAR Scotland last week to ask for an explanation as to why the sign directing traffic off the A90 north-bound at the Lochlands junction simply referred to “Arbroath”, with no mention of Forfar, despite the fact the sign on the southbound carriageway at the junction directs traffic into Forfar.
A BEAR Scotland spokesperson said: “Signage is planned and designed to encourage traffic along preferred routes and help manage traffic flow.”
However, Councillor Middleton was having none of it, pointing out directing north-bound traffic off the A90 at the Glamis junction into Forfar was not her preferred route.
She replied: “This may be BEAR Scotland’s preferred route, but personally I think it is a complete and utter nonsense.
“There is already a fair amount of traffic on the Glamis Road.
“I would have thought that, in any small town, it would be preferable to have a number of routes so that there is a reasonable amount of traffic on each and not one overloaded, particularly where that one has a primary school and residential care homes for the elderly.
“Having fought for years to restrict traffic on the Glamis Road, I am absolutely appalled that BEAR Scotland thinks Forfar doesn’t exist until you get to the Glamis Road junction.”
She stated the sign for Arbroath was causing confusion for motorists and warned the signs could have an impact on businesses in the town.
She had personal experiences of colleagues on the Tayside Community Justice Authority, who travelled from all over Tayside to Forfar for a meeting and who became “very confused” when they got to the Glamis junction.
“Those who were used to looking for the sign at the Lochlands junction were completely confused. People are driving past Forfar - we want to encourage drivers to use a number of routes but BEAR are taking away that choice.”
She added there was also an issue with the road signs for lorries being directed to the Orchardbank Industrial estate. The north-bound signs clearly show a lorry symbol; those on the south-bound carriageway did not.
She called for clear heavy goods vehicle signs at the Glamis Road junction south-bound for lorries going to Orchardbank.
She continued: “It seems to me at the moment that the left hand doesn’t seem to know what the right hand is doing.”
Isobel Ross, chairman of Forfar Community Council, asked if Forfar had become a “satellite” of Arbroath given the new sign and feared Forfar was being by-passed.
She was not happy traffic was being diverted to the Glamis Road junction and felt Forfar was being “short-changed”.