Tuesday 4th April 2023
Did we fool Yeo? This April Fools Day, we teamed up with the UK’s largest motoring organisation The AA to introduce the UK’s first ‘cow crossing’ at Yeo Valley Organic Farms and Gardens, an alternative to the traditional zebra crossings we all know and use.
We wanted everyone to believe that zebra crossings were soooo last year and that a moo-sive makeover was underway. The move to cow print crossings shone the spotlight on the much-loved, native cow, while championing organic dairy farmers across the UK.
Well, we knew we couldn’t possibly introduce our new cow print crossing without a bit of expert help. And so we reached out to The AA, who kindly put us in contact with Dr Raif Lopol, AA Charitable Trust road safety expert…
“It is logical to switch zebra crossings to cow crossings in the UK as the cow is a native animal, unlike the zebra. It will though require the Highway Code section on vulnerable road users to be updated yet again. We can talk about safety until the cows come home and fully support this initiative to keep traffic moo-ving.”
Okay okay, we admit it! We did have help from the AA, but ‘Dr Raif Lopol’ isn’t really a real road safety expert, the name is actually an anagram for April Fools.
Next up, we conducted ‘research’ by the Panettone Colour Institute (who have no credentials with colours or delicious sweet Italian bread). Our mission was to highlight that when it comes to colour combination, eyes prefer black and white, which results in the brain interpreting messages quicker vs. harsh glares of colour. What’s more, zebra crossings can cause an optical illusion called ‘razzle dazzle; where in rare situations the synchronised line pattern causes driver confusion… What do you reckon, would you believe the Panettone Colour Institue was the real deal?
Despite the made-up credentials of Dr Raif Lopol and the Panettone Colour Institute, launching this new moo-vement took a great deal of real-life planning. In fact, we actually started preparing our new cow crossings in January. The road marking specialists took over 4hrs to print the crossing – that’s right, although cow crossings will not be rolled out across the UK, you can view a real ‘cow crossing’ exclusively at the Yeo Valley Organic Garden and Farm in Blagdon, Somerset.
Until next year, Happy April Fools!