Guernsey's first official "Route des Maniacs" was launched yesterday by Tourism chief Geoff Norman, amid a fanfare of lorry and car horns.

The five-kilometre stretch of road from St Sampson to Town will provide visitors and locals alike with all-day-long driver-assisted car parking, never-ending road works, and guaranteed danger levels of pollution, noise and road rage.


The Route des Maniacs will also provide a valuable evening and night-time amenity for the car mad youth of Guernsey, as they speed along the front, safe in the knowledge that there are no police around.

The new initiative is sponsored by Norman Piette, and it was only fitting that the convoy on launch day was led by one of the company's over-sized lorries, taking up the entire road, with the deputy at the wheel.

A proud Mr Norman announced his Board have plans to extend the Route des Maniacs throughout the island, but he admitted there were some annoying obstacles - not least the attitude of fellow States members who recently blocked the path to even bigger vehicles.

At least Deputy Norman can count on the support of the States Traffic president, Peter Bougourd, who was the main guest of honour at the unveiling of the first Route des Maniacs.

He explained how his committee had tried to pave the way by allowing a free-for-all on road-works, and by sanctioning an unlimited number of road humps and traffic lights. He also spoke of the committee's attempts to discourage anti-social cyclists by ensuring the cycle lane along the front was always riddled with roadworks and broken glass.

Deputy Bougourd also gave assurances that his committee would never allow the bicycle path to be extended all the way into Town, and he said he would seriously look at giving the Route des Maniacs scheme some real teeth in future.

Deputy Norman agreed with Deputy Bougourd that at present the initiative relies on discouraging non-motorists from using the Route des Maniacs. Both deputies criticised irresponsible cyclists and pedestrians for spoiling the enjoyment of drivers to do as they please along the designated route.

They warned that if the irresponsible minority continues to spoil it for the car-abiding majority, new legislation will have to be brought in.

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