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Highways Magazine Excellence Award

Crown International’s VMC Pole has been short listed for a third industry award. Highways Magazine as part of their Excellence Awards has short listed The VMC Pole for the Highways Industry Product of the Year. Award winners will be announced at the Awards Ceremony on 20th October 2010, at the Millennium Hotel London Mayfair.

The VMC Pole is a new and innovate pole that hangs over a carriageway supporting various equipment such as variable message signs, speed cameras, ANPR cameras, CCTV cameras or any other traffic equipment. The unique feature of this pole is the ability for it to rotate away from the carriageway and over the verge next to the road, it then lowers down to ground level allowing access to the mounted equipment for maintenance, replacement or cleaning. This new product, designed and manufactured by Crown International, is a world first, it has huge cost benefits as it negates the need for traffic management for maintenance and repair of the mounted equipment.

This year the VMC Pole has already won two other industry awards, the CIHT Innovation Award and the Intertraffic Innovation in Infrastructure Award.

Find out more about the VMC Pole

More on the Highways Magazine Excellence Awards

27 VMC Poles Installed on the M4

Crown International are proud to announce that 27 VMC Poles have been successfully installed on the M4 in Wales between junction 24 and 28, it is the first install of our revolutionary new product, we would like to thank everybody who was involved in making this a successful project for us.

The VMC Pole is a unique product designed and manufactured by Crown International that allows safe, secure and easy access to equipment mounted above the carriageway, it rotates away from the road and over the verge before lowering down to ground level for easy access to any mounted equipment.

Find out more about the VMC Pole

Truvelo Smart Pole

Crown International have been working with Truvelo for many years and have many hundreds of successful speed camera installations with the original Crown Pole™ in the UK. Truvelo had a new “D-Cam” family of digital technology speed and red-light and mobile cameras that needed a roadside housing. They were impressed by the benefits that the Crown Smart Pole™ had to offer and a design project got under way.

The result of the design project is a very sleek designed product that is more in-line with contemporary street furniture than roadside engineering equipment. The curved aesthetic enables the pole to sit comfortably on the roadside at any angle, essential for their renowned bi-directional capability. The new fully integrated pole and cabinet design and high security MUL-T-LOCK mechanism help improve the vandal protection of the product.

Truvelo Smart Pole

GATSO Serco Smart Pole

With many successful years in the UK camera market Gatso have been a dominant leader in the UK with many thousands of conventional Crown Pole™ speed camera installations.

UK Home Office approval of the Gatso digital camera system late in 2007 Serco (Gatso’s UK distributors) were extremely keen for Crown to commence in the Gatso type bespoke Smart Pole™. We have been working alongside Serco/Gatso in developing new design poles for both Speed & Red Light camera systems which offer substantial benefits compared to the conventional poles, the new Gatso speed camera Smart Poles™ are now on many UK roads.

Robot International Smart Pole

Working alongside Robot Visual Systems (now Jenoptik) we are currently developing two Smart Pole™ (Easy Poles) designs for both domestic and international speed camera markets. (See Robot Domestic Smart Pole).

The international pole is the bigger of the two poles as it holds more speed enforcement equipment, it  has been taken on in the UK by Siemens.

Our prototype poles have featured on Robots stand at various traffic exhibitions around the world. Siemens have installed a number of test sites in the UK which are being submitted for UK Home-Office approval alongside their new digital camera system.

Robot Domestic Smart Pole

Working alongside Robot we have developed two Smart Pole™  (Easy Pole) designs for both domestic & international markets. (See Robot International Smart Pole)

This domestic version of the Robot Smart Pole is the slimmer of the two poles as it contains less internal speed enforcement equipment. Prototype domestic type poles have featured on Robots stand at various traffic exhibitions around the world and they have  installed a high spec prototype currently located outside there world headquarters in Germany.  They are now starting to roll the pole out to customers with a number of these poles now installed around Germany and Canada.

Redflex Smart Pole

During the launch of the Smart Pole™ range at Crown’s first Traffex exhibition in 2007 Redflex expressed a keen interest in the new design pole, its many benefits both to its clients & engineers. Immediately following the exhibition in 2007 Crown set to work on a bespoke Redflex speed camera Smart Pole™ design & prototype. Within a week of receiving the prototype at the Redflex Headquarters (Australia) an order was placed for 24 poles destination Qatar in the Middle East. This was quickly followed by a further 68 poles for Qatar all of which are now installed on site. In its first year (since starting the design) Redflex have installed well over one hundred Smart Poles™ in a variety of counties ranging from the UK to New Zealand.

In 2008 Redflex officially added the Smart Pole™ to there range of products. At Intertraffic 2008 in Amsterdam Redflex appeared with a comprehensive range of digital enforcement systems, a major new innovation on the Redflex stand is the company’s SmartPole™, a next generation of a combined camera head and counterbalanced system for the worldwide market, designed in partnership with Crown International. According to John Harris, Redflex business development director, Smart Pole™ offers the ability to have “fit and forget” camera technology or the more traditional semi-mobile camera system, where cameras and dummies are interchanged. “All camera operations are carried out at the technicians eye level,” says John Harris.

VMC Pole

The VMC Pole™ is a rotating and lowering  cantilevered motorway pole. Supporting sign or surveillance equipment it is mounted by the side of the road. The pole can be rotated off carriageway and then lowered for access to the equipment mounted on it to allow for repairs and regular maintenance.

It delivers significant cost savings over fixed posts, removing the need for lane possession and additional safety and access equipment when maintenance is required. The new and innovative design has already won three industry awards.  The pole’s first implementation is on a managed motorway scheme in the UK, holding reduced size MS4 variable message motorway signs.

The inbuilt safety features ensure the pole must be fully rotated before the lowering mechanism can be driven, removing the risk of it being inadvertently lowered over the carriageway.

Designed to fulfil a number of functions the VMC Pole™ is currently used for mounting VMS (variable message sign) equipment as well as traffic monitoring and enforcement equipment over highways. However the design is not just for use with motorway signs, it can be extended to other applications and can be both upscaled and downscaled depending on need.

VMC Pole Operation Guide

Illustration shows the transition from the operation position to the maintenance position.

Crown International's VMC Pole Operation Motion

  1. Unlock the pole
  2. Release rotation locking pin
  3. Wind the handle to rotate the pole
  4. Once the pole has rotate through a minimum of 90 degrees the lowering locking bar will be able to be released (the pole has been designed so that it is not possible to release this handle until the pole has rotated a minimum of 90 degrees)
  5. Release the lowering locking bar, once this is released the pole can now be lowered
  6. Wind the lowering handle to lower the arm to ground level
  7. Lock the arm in the desired position (can be locked at any height)
  8. Maintain your equipment
  9. Unlock the arm again and wind the arm back up into position
  10. Engage the lowering locking bar (this can only be engage when the arm is in its up most position and until it is engaged the pole will not rotate back over the road)
  11. Ones the pole is back over the road the rotation locking pin can be engaged
  12. The pole can now be locked

VMC Pole Video

This quick video shows the VMC Pole in action and demonstrates how it works. 

Highway Industry Awards

Intertraffic, Innovation Award within Infrastructure
CIHT (Chartered Institute of Highways & Transport), Innovation Award
Highways Magazine, Highway Industry Product of the Year

VMC Pole Images

Smart Pole

These Smart Pole designs have adopted the visual language of contemporary street furniture. They are the next generation of roadside health and safety equipment. By keeping the renowned counter-balanced Crown Pole™ system and improving on its vandal protection, a quality product has been produced. The unique ability to lower the client’s equipment to ground level makes the Crown Smart Pole™ the only choice for low cost and safe maintenance.

Operation Guide

  1. Unlock the Smart Pole’s main door using the 8mm security alan key and the multi-lock key
  2. Open the door
  3. Remove the lowering handle from inside the door
  4. Hook the handle into its corresponding location hole in the “throat section”
  5. Slowly pull the “throat” down to its lowest position
  6. Slide the lowest end of the handle in the corresponding location hole at the base of the pole and secure
  7. Ground level access is now available to the unit
  8. Each variation of Smart Pole will have different procedure to gain access to there individual unit, such as slide trays or rotation trays to gain the desired access to the equipment
  9. To re-secure the unit reverse the above steps

Smart Pole Range

Crown International have spent the last two years developing their innovative new range of Crown SmartPole™ products. They work closely with each specific client to ensure that their bespoke design meets their aspirations both aesthetically and technically. Listed below is the current range of Smart Poles.

CCTV Poles

Fixed and Hinged (Tilt Over) CCTV Poles

The CCTV Poles are available in both a fixed and hinged (tilt over) configuration, they also come in a range of standard heights though they can be produced to your specification on request. All the CCTV Poles are fitted with the standard 101.6 PCD CCTV fixing holes.

All the CCTV poles can be finished in any paint colour in the RAL or BS4800 range or can be hot dip galvanised depending on customer preference. The maximum load at the top of the pole is 80kgs, however this can be increased to customer requirements.

Hinged (Tilt Over) & Fixed CCTV Poles

Lowering CCTV Poles

The Lowering CCTV pole is a counter balanced pole that has been designed to lower CCTV cameras down to ground level for safe maintenance and repair. Its unique design allows the camera to be lowered vertically negating the need to fold the pole over on a hinge. This method of lowering the vastly reduces the obstruction free space required around the pole compared with hinged poles, which means taller poles can now have ground level access and it can be easily placed within dense urban areas.

Key Benefits

  • Safe ground level access to equipment even on tall CCTV poles
  • High quality bearings for smooth lowering motion
  • Contemporary design
  • Large obstruction free space not required
  • Large base cabinet
  • Single man hand driven mechanism
  • Low maintenance product
  • Bespoke sizes on request
  • Hold multiple cameras


Custom Lowering CCTV Poles

The Lowering CCTV Pole Can be custom designed to suit the customers requirements, it can be as tall as 15 metres or as short as 4 metres. As each pole is custom designed it can be tailored around the technical specification required including localised wind loadings equipment size, equipment weight and the environment it is going to be situated.

Slip Road Pole

The Slip Road Pole is based on our already proven CESS Pole it allows the user to lower a variable message motorway sign down to ground level for maintenance. It is mounted at the side of the carriage way and is commonly used on slip roads in conjunction with our VMC Pole™ on the main motorway. The pole can lower the sign down to ground level, once at ground level it can be rotated around so that the operator can gain access to the back of the sign for maintenance.

It delivers significant cost savings over fixed posts, removing the need for ladders and additional safety and access equipment when maintenance is required. The pole’s first implementation will be on a managed motorway scheme in the UK.

Designed to fulfil a number of functions the Slip Road Pole™ will be used for mounting motorway sign equipment as well as traffic monitoring and enforcement equipment. However the design can be extended to other applications and can be both upscaled and downscaled depending on need.

Operation Guide

  1. Unlock the pole and open the door handle
  2. This will now allow the support arm lock to be released
  3. Disengage the support arm
  4. Now open the door
  5. Pull down the “T” bar handle
  6. Release the “T” bar from the saddle of the handle
  7. Use the “T” bar to effortlessly lower the equipment
  8. Release the rotation locking pin
  9. Rotate the sign to a convenient angle
  10. Maintain your equipment
  11. Reverse the above steps to close the pole

Gantry Pole

From 2001 Crown worked closely with Network Rail in designing a gantry signal post based on a counterbalanced design – giving the train driver a clearer sighting of the signal and the maintainer similar Health and Safety enhancements. Over 300 of these units have been installed on the West Coast line.

The Crown Gantry Mounted Counter-Balanced Signal Support Post is installed in a vertical position on a gantry. The post mounting brackets have a number of location points allowing the post height to be adjusted (vertically) to achieve the ground to signal head clearance required for signal sighting.

The Crown Gantry Post provides robust support for various combinations of signal head equipment. The function of the post is to provide improved safe access to the signal head equipment for maintenance purposes.

The post is relatively maintenance-free and incorporates a number of ‘duplicated’ safety features to safeguard personnel and equipment when carrying out maintenance activities.

The post is designed to comply with British Standards, BD51/98 Portal and Cantilever Sign and Signal structures, and relevant Railway Group and company Standards.

This pole is often used on railway engineering projects in conjunction with our CESS Pole.

Product design and operation overview

  1. The Gantry post signal head equipment, mounted on a signal head platform (moveable carriage) is connected, via a chain and sprocket mechanism, to a moveable counter-balance weight carriage.
  2. The signal head carriage is fitted with a wheel-block (roller) assembly that runs in guide rail channels formed by the post structure.
  3. The chain and sprocket mechanism and counter-balance weights ensure that minimum effort is required to raise or lower the signal head into position.
  4. The chain and sprocket mechanism and counter-balance carriage are located inside the post which has a lockable door. The door allows access to the counter-balance mechanism and, when fully closed and locked, ensures the signal head remains in its fully lowered Operating Position.
  5. Two dampers, located at the top of the post, one mounted inside the post parallel to raise/lower hand-wheel, and the other just below the post end cap, cushion the signal head from a hard impact when it is raised or lowered to the full extent of its travel.


The Crown counter balance CESS Pole is permanently installed at trackside on a concrete or pile foundation. They are available in heights to suit the specific location and signal requirements. Adopted from the Roadside Crown Pole™  this design feature a counter balance lowering mechanism which enables ground level access operated by only a single engineer.

The Crown CESS Pole is positioned to attain equal distance between the centre-line of the signal head and track and the centre-line of the post and track.

The pole design provides robust support for various combinations of signal head equipment. The function of the pole is to provide improved safe access to the signal head equipment for maintenance purposes.

The pole is relatively maintenance-free and incorporates a number of ‘duplicated’ safety features to safeguard personnel and equipment when carrying out maintenance activities.

The pole is designed to comply with British Standards, BD51/98 Portal and Cantilever Sign and Signal structures, and relevant Railway Group and company Standards.

This pole is often used on railway engineering projects in conjunction with our Gantry Pole.

We now also offer an adapted version of this to hold matrix signs for use on A roads and motorway slip roads, find out more about the Slip Road Pole.

Crown Pole

Unique design features have made the Crown Pole™ the most successful roadside safety camera enclosure, both in the UK and worldwide. With over 6000 installations it established Crown International as a world leader in the design and manufacture of both poles and cabinets for the roadside safety market. We supply all major speed camera vendors with the CrownPole™ along with client specific cabinets, including Gatso/Serco, Truvelo, Redflex and Robot.

It uses a counter balance system to lower the client’s equipment to ground level for effortless and safe maintenance of their equipment. This simple mechanism is still operational on installations over 15 years old.

This same mechanism is so reliable that it has been used in the newly developed Smart Pole, the Smart Pole is a modernised version of the Crown Pole that offers greater vandalism protection and a contemporary aesthetic.

Fixed Pole

This product is one of the only poles we design/manufacture which excludes the requirement for the lowering of equipment to maintenance level. Currently used by Redspeed International throughout Europe this design is aimed at “fit & forget” camera installations with many hundreds of installations in the London area alone.

RedSpeed™ International is a leading supplier of digital solutions to the traffic enforcement industry. Specialising in the development, research, manufacture, installation and maintenance of digital enforcement cameras. Fixed and mobile digital enforcement solutions have been implemented across the world, from the USA, Africa, West and Eastern Europe to Asia.

We also manufacture a range of stainless steel enclosures for Redspeed which include high security ground mounted cabinets & 2 & 3 lane camera housings.

Enclosures and Cabinets

Roadside Cabinets

Crown has been designing/manufacturing cabinets for over 15 years using materials such as Stainless Steel, Aluminium & Mild Steel. Almost every speed camera enclosure in the UK has been supplied by Crown International. They are offered in a wide range of finishes including metal sprayed, galvanised or painted to any colour in the RAL or BS4800 range.

We have a range of standard cabinets that are available including sizes suitable for use with 19” racking equipment.

Combined Equipment Cabinets (CEC)

Crown International are now offering manufacture of the Highways Agency new Combined Equipment Cabinets.

Designed to meet the new specification set out in MCE-1227.

Custom Designed Cabinets and Enclosures

Alternatively we have the in house capabilities to design and manufacture bespoke cabinets to your exact requirements or cabinets can be produced to a supplied set of drawings.
We offer extremely competitive prices by using the latest design software & manufacturing techniques including laser cutting and CNC bending.

Available in a number of bespoke designs Crown have a vast knowledge in cabinet design for roadside use. As with all of our products our cabinets come complete with 10 year paint warranty (terms & conditions apply) and host many features including high security locking mechanisms (up to six way), fireman access locks, double skins, stainless steel hinges, ground roots (where necessary).

Mobile Equipment

Due to the vast experience at Crown International, we are able to produce bespoke products to suit the clients needs, these often include designing mobile versions of a clients existing product.

Crown International have designed and built GATSO camera trailers, tripod equipment for mobile speed cameras and have designed many other custom mobile equipment such as motorway matrix sign trailers.

CIHT Innovation Award

The 5th Annual CIHT (The Chartered Institution of Highways & Transportation) Awards ceremony took place at Lord’s Cricket Ground, London on the 16th of June 2010.

Crown International’s VMC Pole won the Innovation category, which is its second industry award.

The CIHT Awards celebrate and reward remarkable achievements in the highways and transportation industry, it is big opportunity to appreciate the  hard work of those working in the sector. The host for the evening was Jonathan Agnew, from Test Match Special.

More information on the CIHT Awards

Find out more about the VMC Pole

Crown International have huge experience in the design and engineering of new innovative products, take a look at our design services to see if we can help you.

InterTraffic 2010 Innovation Award

We are thrilled to announce that Crown International’s VMC Pole has won the Innovation Award in the Infrastructure category at the 2010 Inter Traffic Exhibition in Amsterdam.

The VMC Pole is a brand new product from Crown International that allow equipment such as traffic signs to be hung over the motorway however it also allows the equipment to be rotated off over the carriageway and over the verge and then lowered down to ground level for easy access to maintain or replace.

Read more about the VMC Pole

If you would like Crown International’s engineering team to develop a new and innovative product for you, then take a look at our design services.

Find out more about the Intertraffic Innovation Award

InterTraffic 2010

InterTraffic is one of the most important International events for the traffic and transportation industry, it is a great opportunity to meet with the entire industry, this year it was held at the RIA in Amsterdam.

Crown International took advantage of this huge stage to exhibit the new and revolutionary VMC Pole with great success. The VMC Pole is a innovative new pole that holds equipment such as traffic signs, ANPR cameras, CCTV cameras and speed cameras over the carriage way, but also allows the user to rotate the equipment back over the verge and then lower it down to ground level for easy maintenance and repair.

The VMC Pole was one of the most striking products at the exhibition and  received a huge amount of interest, it was nominated for the InterTraffic Innovation Award, and won in the Infrastructure Category.

Find out more about the VMC Pole