THESE are the signs of better things to come, say Dudley Council.

New signage is going up on several ‘gateways’ to the borough as it ‘re-opens for business’ after the second lockdown.

The council is investing £53,000 to upgrade and replace signs welcoming people to the borough at 20 locations.

They are being installed on a rolling programme, paid for by sponsors advertising on the signs

Manufacturing firm Thomas Dudley and Dudley College are among those to have already signed up, but there are still spaces left.

The sponsorship money will continue to come in after the initial investment has been covered, and that has aleady been earmarked to clean up the key entry points into the borough around where the new signs are being located.

Council Leader Patrick Harley said: “As we come out of the second lockdown we need to start thinking about attracting people back to our town centres in a safe and sensible manner, and backing the businesses that are being allowed to re-open after a period of real struggle.

“First impressions are absolutely crucial and we want visitors to Dudley to get the right one, as well as ensuring residents are proud of where they call home.”

The signage will reinforce the message that Dudley borough is a place forging a future for all, which is proud to be the historic capital of the Black Country.

Councillor Karen Shakespeare, cabinet member for public realm, said: “Many of our current signs are extremely old and unsightly. They don’t convey a good first impression, quite the opposite in fact.

“They need replacing, and this will allow us to do this at no cost to the taxpayer.”

To sponsor gateway sign ring 01384 818216.