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Mysterious Numbers


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Does anyone have any idea what these mysterious numbers are that have been added to street signs in the S12 area over the last few weeks?

In this example, Ridgehill Avenue, S12 has had 309584 added to it.

Each street has a different 6 digit number added to its {accessible} street signs {not the ones fastened to houses at first floor level, only those at street level}

If the same street has more than one sign it has the same number on it but each street seems to have a unique number

But why have they been put there?

Is it to help illiterate, foreign migrant postmen who can't read the sign?

Is it an extension to the postcode system?

Is it to do with BT landline telephone number allocations?

Is it part of the Governments "big brother is watching you" plan (hence the subtitle derived from "The Prisoner")

Or even part of their armageedon plan for when S12 (a well known target for hostile powers) takes a pre-emptive 100 megaton thermonuclear strike?

Any ideas?

Your answers to be posted in this thread please.

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Stuart0742

Not such a mystery Dave

It's the 6 figure OS grid reference.

I'm trying to find out how it works

These numbers seem to be cropping up on all council roadside stuff, I just thought they were serial numbers, if you put numbers on stuff you can employ somebody to go round and count them make sure they are not being nicked.

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SteveHB

These numbers seem to be cropping up on all council roadside stuff, I just thought they were serial numbers, if you put numbers on stuff you can employ somebody to go round and count them make sure they are not being nicked.

Or maybe when the police find it in a ditch they can return it to the rightful owners .. lol

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Not such a mystery Dave

It's the 6 figure OS grid reference.

I'm trying to find out how it works

OK, so if it was a long street would it have the same numbers at each end?

If it was 2 different short streets that are close together would they both have the same number?

I'll try and check this out as I walk around the area.

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These numbers seem to be cropping up on all council roadside stuff, I just thought they were serial numbers, if you put numbers on stuff you can employ somebody to go round and count them make sure they are not being nicked.

So its a sort of security code to stop people nicking the street sign.

But the security code is only a bit of sticky tape with a number printed on it, surely that would be too easy to remove.

However, knowing how our council likes to waste our moneyon useless quangos, employing someone to put numbers on and someone else to go round counting them just to give them a pointless job seems about right. :angry:

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Or maybe when the police find it in a ditch they can return it to the rightful owners .. lol

A History teacher that I work with (not at Norfolk) once told a group of Y7's (first years) that the Roman Standard Bearer lead the Roman legions into battle.

The Roman Standard had an eagle and the letters SPQR on it.

He told them that

"SPQR stands for something in Latin that means translated into English "Property Of The Roman Empire" so that if he lost it in a battle whoever found it could return it to the rightful owners"

Sounds like you are suggesting something similar could happen with Sheffield street signs.

After all some of the older ones did used to say "Sheffield District Council" on them.

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Stuart0742

So its a sort of security code to stop people nicking the street sign.

But the security code is only a bit of sticky tape with a number printed on it, surely that would be too easy to remove.

However, knowing how our council likes to waste our moneyon useless quangos, employing someone to put numbers on and someone else to go round counting them just to give them a pointless job seems about right. :angry:

There you go problem solved lol

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There you go problem solved lol

I don't really think so.

So far I think vox's idea about OS map grid references is the most convincing but I need to find out how it works and if it actually fits with the numbers on the road signs.

Then again why would anyone want to know their 6 figure map reference from a street sign?

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Stuart0742

I don't really think so.

So far I think vox's idea about OS map grid references is the most convincing but I need to find out how it works and if it actually fits with the numbers on the road signs.

Then again why would anyone want to know their 6 figure map reference from a street sign?

There are 2 road signs across the rd from my house, either side of the next rd they are numbered 309418 & 309419, don't think they are grid nos.

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There are 2 road signs across the rd from my house, either side of the next rd they are numbered 309418 & 309419, don't think they are grid nos.

The one in my picture is 309584.

Funny how they all start with 309, even though we live several miles apart, sort of rules out grid numbers then :(

Any other (sensible) ideas?

Anyone know what they are?

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Stuart0742

The one in my picture is 309584.

Funny how they all start with 309, even though we live several miles apart, sort of rules out grid numbers then :(

Any other (sensible) ideas?

Anyone know what they are?

Serial Nos.

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Guest tsavo

Probably the sign number itself. The recorded number will tell them the size and type of sign if a replacement is required.

Probably wrong........but sounds good.

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Guest Gramps

The one in my picture is 309584.

Funny how they all start with 309, even though we live several miles apart, sort of rules out grid numbers then :(

Any other (sensible) ideas?

Anyone know what they are?

309 may be nothing more than a date...March 2009 ?

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309 may be nothing more than a date...March 2009 ?

Had another look today as I walked the length of Alnwick Road to buy a newspaper at the shop opposite the end of Sharrard Road. All the signs said Alnwick Road S12.

The one at the Hollinsend Road junction outside the Hollin Bush was 308758

The 3 signs at the Foxwood jubction were 308762, 308763 and 308764.

The ones at the other junction with Ridgehill Avenue are 309364 and 309365

From this I can coclude:-

1}

The number is unique to each individual sign and NOT THE STREET (my appologies for not realising this earlier and giving false information in post #1)

2}

As these start with 308 as well as 309 it is NOT A DATE REFERENCE

3}

As 308762, 308763 and 308764 are all within a few yards of each other it is NOT AN OS MAP GRID REFERENCE

I assume that Stuart0742, Tsavo and SteveHB are most likely to be correct with some sort of serial or inventory number as it is unique to the sign and only applies to "street furniture" signs at ground level (those that could get damaged or nicked). There are several other Alnwick Road signs on the sides of houses which do not have a number.

Any further imput welcome

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While were at it, but not exactly local, more national,

What are those funny number signs you keep passing on the motorway?

The ones that just say something like "A 382.7" where the A is centred above the number and the number frequently carries, as in my example, a decimal fraction.

They seem to bear no relation to motorway junctions or distances from a fixed starting point, or, as far as I can tell, height above sea level.

What does the A stand for?

My copy of the Highway Code does not include them

Again, anyone got any ideas about these mysterious numbers?

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madannie77

While were at it, but not exactly local, more national,

What are those funny number signs you keep passing on the motorway?

The ones that just say something like "A 382.7" where the A is centred above the number and the number frequently carries, as in my example, a decimal fraction.

They seem to bear no relation to motorway junctions or distances from a fixed starting point, or, as far as I can tell, height above sea level.

What does the A stand for?

My copy of the Highway Code does not include them

Again, anyone got any ideas about these mysterious numbers?

These motorway signs are known as "Driver Location Signs" and indicate the distance from the start fo the motorway and the direction of travel.

More details (probably too many details) can be found here on the Highways Agency Site.

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These motorway signs are known as "Driver Location Signs" and indicate the distance from the start fo the motorway and the direction of travel.

More details (probably too many details) can be found here on the Highways Agency Site.

Thanks madannie, that gives a full and complete answer answer to that one,

But if you are broken down or witness an accident on a motorway I don't see how saying :-

"I'm on the M1 northbound between J32 and J33"

Is any different or any worse than saying :-

"I'm on the M1 between M1 B 387.2 and M1 B 389.4"

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madannie77

Thanks madannie, that gives a full and complete answer answer to that one,

But if you are broken down or witness an accident on a motorway I don't see how saying :-

"I'm on the M1 northbound between J32 and J33"

Is any different or any worse than saying :-

"I'm on the M1 between M1 B 387.2 and m1 B 389.4"

What was wrong with the old mileposts I do not know, but as governmental organisations at all levels love new things it was obvious that shiny new signs would have to replace the boringly functional and discrete old posts.

Having done a lot of driving recently, I would suggest that a lot of people on motorways have no idea of where they are in relation to junctions and locations in general, so the new signs might be useful, although whether these people would have noticed them is another matter, as they seem to not notice junction signposts until the very last second.

Enough ranting for now. In addition I have no idea about the numbers on roadsigns in Sheffield.

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What was wrong with the old mileposts I do not know, but as governmental organisations at all levels love new things it was obvious that shiny new signs would have to replace the boringly functional and discrete old posts.

Having done a lot of driving recently, I would suggest that a lot of people on motorways have no idea of where they are in relation to junctions and locations in general, so the new signs might be useful, although whether these people would have noticed them is another matter, as they seem to not notice junction signposts until the very last second.

Enough ranting for now. In addition I have no idea about the numbers on roadsigns in Sheffield.

I'm sure you're right about people not knowing where they are in relation to junctions. But judging from this thread and people I've spoken to very few have a clue what the new posts are for. They look more like frequencies of the local radio that distance markers. Presumably if someone breaks down and gets on the phone the operator has to ask 'can you see a blue post with numbers on? What does it say?' :huh:

(I've just had a look at the website. I notice distances are in kilometers not miles. Metrication creep? :angry: )

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Guest Gramps

Dave,

You - "Funny how they all start with 309, even though we live several miles apart, sort of rules out grid numbers then

Any other (sensible) ideas?"

Me - "309 may be nothing more than a date...March 2009 ?"

You - "As these start with 308 as well as 309 it is NOT A DATE REFERENCE"

No need to SHOUT !!

Are you a school teacher by occupation ? :rolleyes:

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Dave,

You - "Funny how they all start with 309, even though we live several miles apart, sort of rules out grid numbers then

Any other (sensible) ideas?"

Me - "309 may be nothing more than a date...March 2009 ?"

You - "As these start with 308 as well as 309 it is NOT A DATE REFERENCE"

No need to SHOUT !!

Are you a school teacher by occupation ? :rolleyes:

How did you guess Gramps?

Sorry about the SHOUTING, my appologies but as a schoolteacher who still uses a board and chalk (or at least its modern day equivalent) I tend to use BLOCK CAPITALS to add a bit of extra EMPHASIS so that people dont miss the point, - sorry! (I also have this habit of adding extra bits of detail in brackets, oops!) :(

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What was wrong with the old mileposts I do not know, but as governmental organisations at all levels love new things it was obvious that shiny new signs would have to replace the boringly functional and discrete old posts.

Having done a lot of driving recently, I would suggest that a lot of people on motorways have no idea of where they are in relation to junctions and locations in general, so the new signs might be useful, although whether these people would have noticed them is another matter, as they seem to not notice junction signposts until the very last second.

Enough ranting for now. In addition I have no idea about the numbers on roadsigns in Sheffield.

I'm sure your right madannie, a lot of drivers on the motorway don't seem to notice signs, including important ones on the overhead illuminated signs that say

"DANGER, ACCIDENT AHEAD MAX SPEED 40"

If they don't know what junction numbers they are between (M1 J32 and M1 J33) then they clearly don't know where they are going

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(I've just had a look at the website. I notice distances are in kilometers not miles. Metrication creep? :angry: )

Well spotted Bayleaf,

I noticed that immediately but kept quiet about it as I thought Stuart0742 would be the first to comment on it as we seem to have this ongoing Metric or Imperial argument.

Sometimes we favour the metric system and at others champion the old Imperial standards.

Its part of our age, education and upbringing that we are bi-lingual in numeric units and seem to be equally familiar with both and can convert between them at less than a seconds notice (especially into old currency).

But you are right, - some things are so English and so historically routed in our society that we refuse to metricate them even though we know full well what their metric equivalent is,

To us 50p is still 10 bob

We only buy beer in pints, never in litres

We still buy meat, fruit and veg by the lb (pound), never in grams or kilograms (look what a fuss that caused in the EU)

We still convert the litres of petrol we buy back into gallons

and, back to point,

All British signposts and mileposts are in miles, Imperial British miles to be correct, to distinguish them from anyone else's slightly longer or shorter miles, our miles are a full 1760 yard made up of 3 feet each, and each of these made up of 12 inches, - no creeping metrication there!

So WHY are these new signs in KILOMETRES?

...and accurate to the nearest 100m if the decimal point is to be believed, - or is that just a radio frequncy in MHz? (with a wavelengtrh in METRES!!!)

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Thanks madannie, that gives a full and complete answer answer to that one,

But if you are broken down or witness an accident on a motorway I don't see how saying :-

"I'm on the M1 northbound between J32 and J33"

Is any different or any worse than saying :-

"I'm on the M1 between M1 B 387.2 and M1 B 389.4"

All the jolly banter aside, here's a scenario which explains why the small marker posts are there and necessary.

A car runs off the road late on a Sunday night. The driver is injured. The young passenger who hasn't a clue which motorway he's on, never mind what direction they were traveling or between which junctions, phones for help. These markers will pin point him to the emergency services to within 100 mt.

People should also be aware that the markers count up and down between emergency telephones. By reading the nearest marker you can tell if you are closer to the one up the carriageway or down it. Thereby saving a possible 900mt walk instead of 100mt.

Bear in mind these were introduced before most people had mobile phones.

On the subject of imperial - metric. We are a strange lot aren't we?

If I measure a room in order to order a piece of carpet I will always do so in metric, but once on the job I switch between metric and imperial at random when cutting of pieces for fitting.

Also I tend to think in inches for small amounts and would normally refer to anything less than 0.5mt as ft & inches.

Approximate measurements also get asked for in feet and inches. I would probably shout down stairs something like " cut me a bit of underlay off. About 6ft will do"

All this said, I can actually do Imp/Metric length conversions in my head.

For most older people, imperial is easier to visualize. If I was told that someone was 1.6mt tall, I would have to think of it as 5' 3" before I could decide if they were tall or short.

There's something else we do which is a bit odd.

We tend to express high temperatures in Degrees Fahrenheit and cold in Centigrade.

When it's hot it's always "up in the 80s", but when it's cold we're more likely to say "it's 2 degrees below freezing" than to say it's 28 degrees.

Edit:

Thinking on, I'm sure the markers are set at 1/10th of a mile rather than 100mt

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