Worboys Committee

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Equivalent pre and post Worboys road signs
pre-Worboys sign 
post-Worboys sign 

The Worboys Committee was formed by the British government in July 1963 to review signage on all British roads.[1] This was in response to two articles published in 1961 by graphic designer Herbert Spencer, illustrating the shortcomings of non-motorway British road signs.[2]

The committee was chaired by Sir Walter Worboys of ICI.[3] T. G. Usborne of the Ministry of Transport had charge of proceedings, and Jock Kinneir and his assistant (and later business partner) Margaret Calvert were commissioned as designers.[2]

The result was a document that defined traffic signing in Britain: Traffic Signs Regulations and General Directions (TSRGD). It was first introduced on 1 January 1965 but has been updated many times since. It is comparable with the Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices in the United States. The signage recommended by the committee made heavy use of pictograms, as was the tradition in mainland Europe, together with a new typeface developed by Kinneir and Calvert.[2]


  1. ^ "Hansard : Worboys Committee and New Traffic Signs". 3 July 1963. Retrieved 29 June 2011. 
  2. ^ a b c "Origin of British road sign design". Design Museum. Archived from the original on November 23, 2010. Retrieved 29 June 2011. 
  3. ^ "Hansard : Traffic Signs Committee Report". 13 March 1963. Retrieved 29 June 2011. 

Further reading[edit]

CBRD - War To Worboys