We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Atrocious Road Signage on Isle of Wight

Basingstock
1 post
Save Topic
Atrocious Road Signage on Isle of Wight

Just returned from our first holiday on the Isle of Wight. The place seemed very downmarket and totally at odds with many of the reviews I have seen on tripadvisor and elsewhere. I understand that many streets in many UK towns have empty shop units and peeling paint but almost everywhere except Cowes on the IOW appeared worn out and neglected. What REALLY wound me up was the fact that the local authorities on the island appear to be making no effort whatsoever to foster tourism even though it must make up a great deal of the income and jobs in the area. The first sign of this was being unable to read any of the on-surface road direction signs which had worn off years ago and had apparently been forgotten about. This made for difficult driving, particularly in complex intersections in, say, Newport where one quite simply lost track of where one was going. How much does it cost to renew white painted on-surface road signs? They just don't appear to care and that is obviously a form of commercial suicide! The thing which convinced me that whoever is in charge of road-signage wants sacking was the additional difficulty of not being able to see hardly any of the regular metal road direction signs because of them being obscured by shrubs and undergrowth. I realise that in high-summer most herbage runs rampant but so should everyone else including the civic authorities but it looks like they just can't be bothered on the IOW. Seriously I am not being over-sensitive. Almost every road sign was obscured sufficiently to make it impossible to read. The same thing can be said of the so called 'Quiet Lanes' (narrow roads with very high hedgerows, like in Cornwall, which criss-cross the island. They do have some passing places but you could hardly get into them because the hedges hadn't been cut back for years. I actually saw two cyclists having to back-up in order to let an estate car through! Maybe the IOW doesn't want tourists or maybe the people who care for the environment there are too thick to realise that details like this make or break a holiday and ensure new tourists never come back. I won't be because I became sick of having to take detours and do three-point-turns in dangerous places. Additionally, you can't rely on your satnav because if you do you'll find yourself sent down a 'Quiet Lane' in a gridlock facing other angry car users. If the Isle of Wight people can't be bothered then neither can I. This basic requirement tarnished an otherwise good and restful holiday.

Aylesbury
Destination Expert
for Playa Blanca
Level Contributor
11,024 posts
30 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: Atrocious Road Signage on Isle of Wight

Hi John

Years ago the island was packed and you couldn't even get a Saturday ferry booking unless you booked a year in advance. Since the package tours came along the younger generation don't holiday there in great numbers as much as the older generation did, the price of the ferries have escalated adding more than £100 cost to an alternative holiday in the UK.

There is not the money on the island that there used to be from the tourists, and I guess the Councils are strapped for cash to do all this work. I notice the car parking signs are well clear lol

I do touch on the subject in the first couple of paragraphs in this review

holidayreviews.info/viewtopic.php?f=17&t=32

Having said all that, we did stay at a lovely place which was to a very high standard and enjoyed walking along the coast, which did bring the place to life for us last time

Edited: 8:33 am, August 16, 2013
Isle Of Wight
Destination Expert
for Isle of Wight, Sitges
Level Contributor
3,378 posts
247 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Atrocious Road Signage on Isle of Wight

John D You should send a copy of this to the "Letters" page of the Isle of Wight County Press.

As an aside, on the "Quiet Roads" cyclists (pedestrians and horse riders) have right of way over cars, so really should not have backed up.

Aylesbury
Destination Expert
for Playa Blanca
Level Contributor
11,024 posts
30 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: Atrocious Road Signage on Isle of Wight

If I'm right the council even shut the tourist office next to Sandown pier that use to recommend last minute accommodation that was available to the tourists, I understand it has reopened run by volunteers

Southampton, UK
Level Contributor
1,316 posts
27 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: Atrocious Road Signage on Isle of Wight

Unfortunately the Isle of Wight is not alone in looking neglected - many other previously busy holiday resorts have also suffered as a result of cheaper foreign holidays offering more assured weather. I noticesd this at Hastings several years ago.

Even so, many parts of the IOW are delightful - it is like going back to an England of 50 years ago.

The cost of the ferries has always been a sore point. However, some hotels offer package deals of accommodation and ferry crossings which reduce the cost.

Aylesbury
Destination Expert
for Playa Blanca
Level Contributor
11,024 posts
30 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: Atrocious Road Signage on Isle of Wight

Hi Mike

yes some of the bigger hotels do include it in the price but I don't think the smaller hotels do, or those staying in a cottage or caravans wouldn't get the ferry included. The ferries are clearly a concern for people from the number of threads on here trying to get discount codes

Edited: 1:44 pm, August 16, 2013
Birmingham, United...
1 post
1 review
Save Reply
6. Re: Atrocious Road Signage on Isle of Wight

Love your review! it made great reading, and raised several smiles!! quite dry/comical in places :o) maybe you should consider writing for a local paper, or at the very least continue your holiday review reporting on here....I'm off to the IOW on 20th Aug...still looking forward to it tho! its a break away from the humdrum of Brum!!

Emsworth, United...
Level Contributor
154 posts
21 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: Atrocious Road Signage on Isle of Wight

I lived on the beautiful Isle for 8 years, however, the cost of getting to/from the island was one of the reasons I left. They used to say that the Solent is the busiest and most expensive bit of sea in the world - don't know if this is still true. Unfortunately, the cost of getting to the Isle of Wight probably deters day visitors and this does not help the island economy. There is no doubt that it is beautiful in its majority; however, like most of the UK, you can holiday abroad for less. I agree that you should write to the Isle of Wight County Press, as that is the islands main newspaper; but at the end of the day, if they are struggling financially, then roads may not be a priority. There was an idea once of building a tunnel between Gosport and Cowes (I think) however, this was fiercely opposed by Islanders - pity really because its economy could have been so much stronger than it is today.

Budapest, Hungary
Destination Expert
for Budapest, Hungary
Level Contributor
9,188 posts
48 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: Atrocious Road Signage on Isle of Wight

Cost me £38 for a day return on Easter Sunday, perhaps I am alone in thinking that was reasonable. Agree about the signage though !

Aylesbury
Destination Expert
for Playa Blanca
Level Contributor
11,024 posts
30 reviews
Save Reply
9. Re: Atrocious Road Signage on Isle of Wight

hi RomanCitizen

Yes a day trip is not too bad but you can day trip to anywhere else in the UK for nothing, the main problem comes when you want to stay a week which is what the Islanders would like you to do but the fare then rises to over £100

I just came back from Thassos which is a similar distance from the mainland (journey is 40 minutes) and the ferry charge 16 euro's eachway for the car and 3 euro's pp and you can stay as long as you wish

img405.imageshack.us/img405/4390/oe32.jpg

Thanks wickedvicky i write a review on everywhere I go and try and describe the place as I see it.

Edited: 3:15 am, August 17, 2013
Aylesbury
Destination Expert
for Playa Blanca
Level Contributor
11,024 posts
30 reviews
Save Reply
10. Re: Atrocious Road Signage on Isle of Wight

One can still have lovely holiday breaks on the island, this hotel was expensive but once there we didn't even use our car and enjoyed every minute of it

tripadvisor.co.uk/ShowTopic-g190926-i3385-k5…

Get answers to your questions about Isle of Wight