Lack of street numbering is causing people to get lost around Aylesbury

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A LACK of street numbering is causing confusion and difficulties for strangers visiting the town, and may be having a detrimental effect on retailers and businesses.

Graham Aylett, a committee member of Aylesbury Old Town Residents’ Association, says this is a long-standing problem which could be easily rectified by raising general awareness.

He said: ‘It poses a practical problem. Strangers to the town wonder where the numbers run in a street or around a square. I have personal experience of members of the public asking where places are.”

Some postmen also have difficulties locating particular premises.

Mr Aylett says clearer numbering would have multiple benefits, including steering shoppers and clients quicker to the particular business they seek; helping visitors to the town; and facilitating planning by making clear which building is affected.

In a letter sent on behalf of the residents’ association to Teresa Bull, the street naming and numbering officer of Aylesbury Vale District Council, Mr Aylett points out that street numbering is a requirement of the Town Improvement Clauses Act 1847.

This stipulates that houses and other buildings in a street should be marked with numbers and should be renewed if they become obliterated or defaced.

Mr Aylett said: “If this is required by law, then it should be done.”

He added that the provisions and requirements of the act can be implemented cheaply and efficiently by alerting the premises’ freeholders to the general benefits of street numbering.

Councillor Barbara Russel supports the residents’ association in its efforts to improve street numbering in a consistent and coherent way.

She said: “At the moment, some doorway numbers are missing and this can be difficult for anyone who needs to write a letter to a certain proprietor but does not know the number of the address they seek.

“Or maybe someone has been directed to a shop or business at number so-and- so, but they cannot find the establishment because it is not numbered.

“Think of an emergency vehicle called to a certain shop, but there is more than one of these outlets in the area.

“Then surely giving a door number to the emergency vehicle would help it arrive faster, than having it stop at all the similar outlets before finding the right one.

“If these retail outlets and businesses could have street numbers, in largish proportions, placed above each doorway for everyone to see, then that would be of great help to everybody.”

AVDC officer Ms Bull told the Herald that she has received Mr Aylett’s letter and will be responding to it when she has carried out the necessary background work.