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TOO DIFFICULT: ‘Dangerous’ Bebington crossing

TOO DIFFICULT: ‘Dangerous’ Bebington crossing

Mount Road in Bebington, Wirral, Image: LDRS

A “dangerous” Merseyside road is stopping people going to an historic woodland area, according to campaigners.

People believe Mount Road, in Bebington, Wirral, is unsafe and too difficult for families with young children or disabled people to cross safely.

Judith Grier, from Bebington, has set up a petition (https://www.change.org/p/wirral-council-mount-road-higher-bebington-safe-crossing-points-needed-to-storeton-woods?redirect=false) calling for safe crossing points to be installed at various key points along the road.

A spokesperson for Wirral Council said the authority will respond to Ms Grier directly once it receives the petition.

Ms Grier, who is standing as the Green Party’s candidate for Bebington in next May’s Wirral Council elections, told the LDRS: “People mention it to us all the time.

“From the residential parts of Bebington you have to cross over to get to Storeton Woods.

“If you’ve got young children or any mobility issues you wouldn’t be able to get across. A crossing would help people to get across safely and slow cars down as well.”

She said the petition, which had 143 signatures at the time of writing, was not about electioneering for the upcoming vote, but about highlighting this problem.

Ms Grier added: “People are raising these concerns all the time and [this one] has not been resolved. I’m pushing for a solution.”

Commenting on Ms Grier’s petition, one person said: “I live locally and it’s dangerous to cross, especially with children. It surprises me that an accident hasn’t happened.”

Another person who signed the petition added: “I cross this road every day, it’s really dangerous to cross at any point.

“The speed at which cars travel and the sheer volume, heading to and from the Clatterbridge roundabout, particularly morning and evening is relentless.

“The lack of effective traffic calming measures and safe crossing areas places everyone at risk when trying to cross.”

Responding to a post on the issue by the LDRS, one person said: “[A crossing point is] definitely needed! I don’t think I can recall any serious collisions but that’s not a decent metric.

“Would I let my kids cross on their own? No! That’s the metric.

“The road has just been relayed and will have cost a decent amount of money – why couldn’t safe crossing points have been considered as part of the works? Why do we continue to prioritise cars instead of people walking?”

Another person added: “Yes [the road is] very dangerous, especially when there’s a delivery to the pub. Driving out is a nightmare.”

But not everyone agreed, one person said: “I can’t remember hearing of any crashes or serious incidents there so no it’s fine in my opinion.”

Cllr Jerry Williams, who represents Bebington on Wirral Council, wanted to reassure people that he was on top of traffic issues in the area.

Cllr Williams, a Labour member, said: “These are issues we’ve been dealing with for years and years.

“We’ve just had speed limit signs put up in Mount Road, we brought in the speed activation sign by Red Hill Road and promoted the speed camera by Edward Manton Close.

“We also opposed the Storeton development on the basis that it would add between 140 and 150 traffic movements per day in the area.”

He added: “I run down Mount Road or nearby every day and have been doing so for 40 years. We’ve got everything covered.

“Safe crossings have already been looked into. Judith Grier is a candidate for the next election, but we’ve been doing bread and butter work for years in our job as community councillors.

“It’s not about giving the impression you’re doing the work, it’s about doing the work.”

Fellow Bebington councillor Jason Walsh, who represents the Green Party, said: “Storeton Woods is one of the most popular places for people to go and enjoy green space on the Wirral.

“There is really no safe way to walk there, or cycle there in some instances. If you’re disabled and in a wheelchair it’s really intimidating.

“Judith’s petition calls for places along Mount Road to be given safe crossings. Anyone who goes along there will feel how intimidating it is as a pedestrian.

“It bewilders me that after years and years of having Storeton Woods, the council has found no way of aiding the safe crossing of the road.”

A Wirral Council spokesperson said: “New road safety schemes are delivered through our annual Combined Authority Transport Plan programme.

“The council’s annual Combined Authority Transport Plan programme for this year was approved by the Environment, Climate Emergency and Transport Committee on 16 March 2021.

“This means that the budget is already committed for 2021/22. However, once we receive the petition or request, we will respond to the resident directly and ensure this location is put forward for future consideration.

The spokesperson added: “If we consider that pedestrian crossing measures may be warranted, then an outline scheme will be proposed and presented for consideration by Committee in due course.

“The committee will prioritise it against schemes in other locations across the borough.”

 

Words: George Morgan, Local Democracy Reporter


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