after the council's apostrophe vandalism
Well well well. This is interesting. I've being doing a bit of investigative journalism.
I recently posted about councils dropping the apostrophes from road names. I suspected the council found them to be too complicated. They had used the excuse of it being a recommendation:
"Cambridge City Council said they were only following national guidelines [...] Nick Milne, the city council officer responsible for street naming, said [...] the policy brought the council into line with the National Land and Property Gazetteer where all new street names are registered." [Source]
"Councillor Tim Ward, the Executive Councillor for planning, told the Cambridge News: “We are following national guidelines [...] If they change their view we might change our policy." [Source]
So I contacted the National Land and Property Gazetteer. It turns out it is worse than I feared - the guidance does not advise against apostophes in street names or on signs at all. The council had either completely misunderstood the guidance, or wilfully misinterpreted it. According to the email I received from the NLPG this morning:
"GeoPlace does not advise that councils include or remove punctuation in official naming or on the street name plate. Street naming and numbering is a council policy decision."
So the council's claims to be dumbing down language for some official reason are utter nonsense.