How streets are named and numbered

Every property needs an accurate address. It is important that police, emergency services and the public can find and reference different properties.

How streets are named

City, borough and district councils allocate postal numbers to houses and buildings in their area. They also  name new roads and streets.

The council involves the land developer in the street naming process. They invite suggestions and possible alternative names from the developer. These street names with postal numbers go before council for approval.

Adding a house name to a postal address

Councils don't allocate house names. If your home already has a number, the property owner can add a name to the address without contacting the council.

You can add the house name to an existing postal address, but you cannot remove the number from the address.  As the property name is not officially part of the address, you must still display and use the house number in any correspondence.

When choosing a house name, don't use one similar or identical to any other in the same area.

When a house doesn't have a number

It isn't easy for councils or the emergency services to identify an address using a house name alone.  A house number should be prominently displayed to identify the location of a property on a road. 

How a street is renamed or renumbered

Sometimes the council needs to to rename or renumber a street. They do this when:

  • there is confusion over a street's name or numbering
  • a group of residents are unhappy with their street name
  • new properties are built in a street and other properties need to be renumbered to accommodate the new properties
  • the number of named-only properties in a street is causing confusion for visitors and the emergency services

Reporting a problem with a street name sign

Councils are responsible for providing street name plates and fitting these in suitable positions.

If there is a problem or fault with a street name plate in your area, contact the council:

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