Give us a sign!

Peterhead Prison Museum facilities development co-ordinator Alex Geddes hopes the signs will be erected soon.
Peterhead Prison Museum facilities development co-ordinator Alex Geddes hopes the signs will be erected soon.

Peterhead Prison Museum’s lack of official ‘VisitScotland’ brown tourist signs may have cost it a few visitors.

Selkirk man Robert McKenzie has written to the Buchanie complaining about a lack of signage to the town’s newest tourist attraction.

Mr McKenize commended the museum after a recent visit to the town, but stated: “The visit can best be decribed as amazing and a great asset to the town and wider area. However, there is one area that caused us, and it appears many others, a problem and that is the lack of signage to this wonderful attraction.

“As a 4* VisitScotland attraction we could not believe there was not one brown sign showing us the way and we ended up in the town centre, before being directed by a resident to the right location.

“While having coffee in the shop we met several other visitors expressing the same concern, while enthusing about the attraction itself.

“It is often highlighted in the media about the benefits tourism has for an area and in these tough economic times surely such an attraction should be fiven full support by the authorities.”

The Buchanie contacted VisitScotland regarding the lack of signposting, but it appears that they have done their part in getting the signage approved and erected.

Neil Christison of VisitScotland, told us: “Our role is to tell the local authority and BEAR Scotland the prison museum is in the quality assurance scheme and we were able to confirm this following the musuem’s four-star grading.

“We have sent a letter to the museum to pass on to the council. This signage is 100 percent needed but it’s just a case of waiting to get it done now. However, if we can help in any way we’d be happy to do so,” he added.

Museum facilities co-ordinator, Alex Geddes, told The Buchanie: “Prior to the museum opening in June last year the initial request for support for brown signs was submitted and since then we have allowed the process to follow through.

“Key strategic areas have been agreed between the roads department and ourselves which would direct vicitors from the three main arterial routes to the museum so we are just waiting for the appropriate authorities to erect the signs.

“Since we opened we have welcomed more than 60,000 visitors to the town, with 95% not from this area. It would be really helpful to have the signs in place soon as we now approach another very busy summer season ahead, so any support to get them in place is welcome.”

Aberdeenshire Council’s roads manager for Banff and Buchan, Derek Murray, said: “Every effort is being made to ensure that the brown tourist signs for Peterhead Prison Museum are in place as soon as possible.

“There is also a proposal to install some signs on the A90 trunk road which is managed by BEAR (Scotland) Ltd and council officers have been in discussions with BEAR regarding the locations of signs, specifications and costs and hope to have a resolution soon.”