A COUNCIL has moved to restore the pride of North Yorkshire’s county town after tourists and residents questioned the literacy of its civic leaders.

Former Mayor of Northallerton Councillor John Coulson has led a two-year campaign to change the five entrance signs to Northallerton after being inundated with complaints that the town’s name featured a lower case “n”.

The “northallerton” signs on the Darlington, Thirsk, Bedale, Richmond and Boroughbridge roads were installed about four years ago and it is understood their designers used a lower case n to fit their artwork.

Loading article content

Councillor Coulson said he had been stunned by the level of irritatation caused by what appeared to be an error and had faced an uphill battle with the town council to “put the capital back in North Yorkshire’s capital”.

He said: “The lower case n was not a mistake, it was supposed to be a modern design.

“I was amazed by the number of people who came up and said ‘don’t you know what you’re doing? Tourists have said how disappointed they were to see such a grammatical error.”

Councillor Steven Richardson added: “It has been a bit of an embarrassment, it has made us look a bit stupid and not literate in any way.”

The council has changed the signs by sticking capital Ns over the lower case letters at a cost of £65, as it would cost thousands of pounds to replace the signs.