Worboys Committee

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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 introduced on 1 January 1965 and has been updated many times since. 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 23 November 2010. Retrieved 29 June 2011.
  3. ^ "Hansard: Traffic Signs Committee Report". 13 March 1963. Retrieved 29 June 2011.

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