Two Variable Message Signs (VMS) that will give information on safe crossing times and advise motorists to check the tidetables will be permanently installed on Holy Island this summer.
The Holy Island Causeway Working Group agreed to install the signs last week following a successful two week trial over the Easter period with feedback showing that the vast majority of visitors noticed the signs and felt they were effective in providing information.
One sign will be situated on the approach to the causeway adjacent to the tidetable layby, with the second being placed near the car park on the island to capture those people using the car park and those who park within the village. The signs will be solar powered but will have battery back-up.
The tidetables that are displayed on the island and on the approach to the causeway have been redesigned to make them more user friendly and easier to follow. These now look the same as the improved timetables shown on the website.
A Quick Response (QR) barcode has also been developed and is provided at various locations around the Island and on the approach to the causeway so that visitors can access the tidetable information quickly.
The barcode can be scanned using a smartphone and takes the user straight to the relevant webpage, therefore eliminating the need to type in a web address. The tide timetables are also available by using our Northumberland App.
Some of the older road and warning signs on the island will be removed to improve the overall environment on the island and avoid clutter.
These measures are being introduced following concerns raised during the summer of 2011 that there had been an increase in the number of vehicles becoming stranded.
The Holy Island Causeway working group, including officers from the County Council, Northumbria Police, HM Coastguard, the RNLI and county and parish councillors, was set up and met in November to discuss possible options to prevent instances occurring.
Cllr Pat Scott chaired the working group and she said: “The trial during the Easter period was very positive and the feedback we received indicated that the signs were effective in getting the message across that people must check the tidetables and ensure they are crossing the causeway at a safe time.
“We know that there will always be those few people who will decide to try and drive across the causeway outside of those safe times, but we hope that these signs, together with the other measures we have put in place, will make people think twice. I look forward to seeing them in place this summer.”
To view the tide timetables and for further information, please go to holyisland.northumberland.gov.uk