Use of 'highway_authority_ref' tag in Northern Ireland (C-roads)

Hi folks,
this is just a suggestion for something that might be a useful tidy-up job for an automated script…

In Northern Ireland, public roads are ‘adopted’ by Stormont’s DfI Roads Service (DfI Roads | nidirect) and given reference numbers of M, A, B, C or U.

On OSM, tagging for M, A and B class roads in Northern Ireland seems pretty consistent, complete and error free:

  • M: highway=motorway, ref=Mnn
  • A (green signs): highway=trunk, reg=Ann
  • A (black-on-white signs): highway=primary, ref=Ann
  • B: highway=secondary, ref=Bnn

however, the numbers for C and U roads do not get put on roadsigns in NI.
So I believe the agreed-upon correct tagging scheme is:

*C: highway=tertiary, highway_authority_ref=Cnnn
*U: highway=unclassified, highway_authority_ref=Unnn

However it looks to me like the majority of C roads in Northern Ireland have had the ref= tag applied, not highway_authority_ref=

Is this worth fixing en masse with a script?

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