§ Mr. Nicholas Winterton
To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions what assessment he has made of the current regulations controlling the nature, size and location of highway signs in areas of outstanding natural beauty and National Parks; and if he will make a statement. 
§ Dr. Strang
The Traffic Signs Regulations and General Directions 1994 were framed, and are currently being updated, to balance the interests of road safety, efficient traffic management and the environment in the design and use of signs so that traffic authorities can, as far as practicable, provide signs appropriate to local conditions. My Department has published guidance on designing signs effectively so that they are not larger than they need to be for the information they contain. We are also actively supporting the Countryside Traffic Measures Group's initiative to investigate the extent to which local traffic management and traffic calming schemes—and associated signs—can be effective in meeting their traffic objectives, whilst being designed with sensitivity to the countryside environment in which they are set. This includes projects in two National Parks.