Peak & Northern Footpaths Society (est.1894)

About our signposts

Signpost no. 1

The Peak & Northern Footpaths Society has a long and proud history in the provision and maintenance of signposts, bridges, etc. Signposts are probably the society's most enduring items, as some are over 100 years old.

We began erecting metal signposts, or notices as they were initially called, in 1905.  Twenty have survived from before WW1 and are a lasting tribute to both the durability of cast iron and the design skills of Rowland Mower of New Mills.  We hope that the current total of over 499 signposts, 8 fingerposts, 5 plaques and 2 toposcopes will provide a long-lasting service to walkers.

Recently we have greatly extended the area in which our signposts are planted.  Small numbers of them can now be found in the Bowland Forest, Pendle, the Ribble Valley, Bradford, Wakefield, Rotherham, North Staffordshire and the Wirral, as well as the Peak District and Pennines.  We welcome suggestions for new sites. Let us know yours.

Signpost & Bridge Gallery

Photographs and locations of all our signposts etc are shown in the Signpost & Bridge Gallery.

Various types of sign

Most of our signs are of the ‘metal plate’ type. Signs were originally made of cast iron and appear to have been individually designed. Signpost no. 1 (above right) is quite plain but functional, having the letters ‘P.D.& N.C.F.P.S, 1905’. Signpost no. 78 has the full title ‘Peak District & Northern Counties Footpaths Preservation Society, 1933’. Some signs even have the altitude on them, for example Signpost no 34 at an altitude of 427 feet.

Signpost no. 78
Signpost no. 34
A modern signpost

The society has also erected bridges, fingerposts, toposcopes, and plaques.

Bridge no. 24
Fingerpost no. 8
Toposcope no. 2
Plaque no. 3 is dedicated to Leslie Meadowcroft, a past President of the Society and a fearsome fighter for the walkers' right of passage.

Additional plaques

Signs are our finest contact with the general walking public, for whom we hope they are an invaluable source of information. As they are such visible structures, they are an excellent way for the society to advertise itself, so most signs have a ‘Join Us’ plaque attached.

Many of our structures also have dedication plaques attached. The society has always taken the opportunity to dedicate signs either to a special event or to a walking enthusiast or walking group. If you would like to know more then please contact us.

Have you seen any damage?

If you have spotted a damaged PNFS signpost, bridge, etc please let us know.

Related pages

Footbridges Signpost & Bridge Gallery Report a damaged signpost or bridge

Page title:About our signposts
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