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Ask a Driving Instructor

Whether you are learner driver or an experienced motorist, you can email any driving-related question to info@wycombedrivingschool.co.uk and you will receive a personal response from Wycombe Driving School boss Audrey Wixon, pictured. The best questions and answers will be published on this website anonymously.

Audrey is a DSA ADI; DIAmond, IAM and RoSPA Gold Advanced Driver; Fleet Trainer; Observer for Institute of Advanced Motorists; & National Standard cycling instructor

Audrey Wixon - manager of Wycombe Driving School
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Is there any meaning behind our road names?

Q: Can you tell anything about a road from its name? I know that cul-de-sacs are often named Close but do other road names have any meaning?
road sign in High Wycombe A: Yes, there is a loose system to the way roads in Britain are named. Generally, the main road in a town will be called the High Street and the roads leading from it will take the name Road, Street or Avenue. Streets tend to be busier than roads and avenues tend to be wide.

Smaller roads take names like Lane, Way, Walk and Drive etc while cul-de-sacs are often called Court, Close or Place. Sometimes roads are named for their shape, such as Crescent or Square, or they may be named after a geographical feature, eg Hill or Causeway, or for their function, eg Parade or Bypass.

Many roads are given the name of the town to which they lead, although the names often change as they near the destination. For example, Hazlemere Road, Penn becomes Penn Road, Hazlemere halfway along. And some roads are named after people - perhaps royalty or a famous person who is associated with the area, eg Disraeli Crescent in High Wycombe. In Widmer End, Honeysuckle Road and Snowdrop Way are named after cows, at the request of the farmer who used to own the land!

So, while the name of a road might help you make an intelligent guess about its style, shape or destination, you can never be absolutely sure. The most inappropriately named road I know around here is a quiet country lane that winds through the tiny village of Radnage, which has the impressive name of City Road!
Audrey Wixon
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Wycombe Driving School - for driving lessons in High Wycombe and surrounding areas - including Amersham, Beaconsfield, Marlow, Hazlemere, Stokenchurch and Princes Risborough. We offer successful, structured driving lessons, providing free theory test software and lesson handouts. Male and female driving instructors are available, providing both manual and automatic driving lessons.