30 Days of Human Comms: #1 Dudley Council’s spoiled tea sign

castle gate

For a while now, I’ve argued for the need to be more human in your comms.

In the public sector, this is especially important as more than 1,200 services are delivered to people.

What is human comms? You’ll recognise it if you see it. It’s engaging and it connects. Sometimes it delivers a message. Sometimes it just works to show that human beings also work in an organisation, too.

I’ve blogged before about the need to have a mix of content in your social media channels to make them work. If you are 80 per cent human and 20 per cent call to action, that’s fine.

So, an experiment, for 30 days I’ll find a thing a day that looks human.

#1 Dudley Council’s Spoiled tea road sign

This has long been a favourite of mine. More than a decade ago, Dudley Council built a new road around Castle Gate in the town. How could they get motorists to take a different route home? Easy. Talk to them in Black Country.

The sign read:

“If yowm saft enuff ter cum dahn ‘ere agooin wum, yowr tay ull be spile’t.”

After living in the Black Country for almost 20 years I know this translates as:

“If you are silly enough to come down this road you will take so long your tea will be spoiled.”

Class, be more like Dudley Council.



Join the Conversation


  1. Hi Dan Great to see the sign again Was partly responsible for getting it done! Just remember getting into work on Monday morning with a ‘call me ASAP’ note from the chief exec, who being an early riser had seen it on his way in All regional broadcasters and most of national press covered it Reduced traffic volume in that area by over 40% in a couple of days Main point it made people find different commute routes by talking, as you say, in a human voice Keep up the good work Tom Slater PS shame there’s not a Solihull dialect
    Sent from my iPhone

  2. As a proud Yam I can see a small flaws in this – while one might ask ‘am yow agooing um?’ But in a longer sentence like this the superfluous a in agooing would likely be dropped. And it would be pronounced um not wum.
    But that’s what you get when you hire someone from a different country to write in the coloqualisms of another area using a dictionary (why would you even do that?).

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