Readers Letter: Dangerous Zebra Crossing needs urgent attention

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Inspired by the reader's letter from Helen Battilana, I and many other local residents and councillors have grave concerns for the safety of pedestrians and road users in Chelford Village.

On the A537 Knutsford Road, which is the main road running through Chelford, there exists a very poorly placed, poorly illuminated zebra crossing. The crossing located opposite Chelford Farm Supplies, is intended to provide a safe location for pedestrians to cross the busy A537 road.

Like many other residents, I have been involved in a 'near miss incident', where a vehicle towing a horsebox did not see me using the crossing and could not brake in time, and instead sped through the crossing.

Naturally, I logged on to the CEC website to raise my concerns and found 8 other reports logging the same concerns of speeding vehicles, and vehicles not acknowledging the crossing in time. Just last week, a resident uploaded a video on to the community Facebook group of themselves using the crossing and cars still travelling past at speed.

The response from CEC was even more concerning than the zebra crossing itself, stating 'As you will appreciate, our resources must be focussed at locations where there is a history of numerous serious and fatal collisions occurring that can be attributed to actionable defects or need. We have aprogramme of locations which require engineering measures where such collisions occur.'

I don't know about other readers, but I read that as a serious or even fatal collision must occur before we will act.

I wrote to Chelford Parish Council who confirmed that my concerns regarding the crossing are shared by many residents and Councillors, and that the Parish Council and the Chelford Ward Councillor are currently pressing Cheshire East Council for improvements to the crossing, with workin progress to address the speeding issues through the village.

My fear is that indeed, someone will unfortunately have to be involved in a serious collision before action is taken, and that is not acceptable. Do readers agree that this cannot be classified as acceptable?

What should I do next?

Aaron Watson

Reader's Letter


Here's what readers have had to say so far. Why not add your thoughts below.

Jonathan Follows
Monday 4th December 2023 at 9:08 am
I have a lot of sympathy with this problem, but the picture appears to show a well-illuminate crossing with bright lights - is it the same one?
However the problem is surely too many drivers who both drive too fast for the conditions and don't pay attention?
Other than installing level crossing gates across the road, I'm not sure what can be done, and it's not clear what is being asked for either, apart from to "do something".
I live in the centre of Wilmslow and cars drive through red pedestrian crossing lights all the time, so changing the zebra crossing to something more grandiose won't solve the problem, in my opinion.
Jon Williams
Monday 4th December 2023 at 4:57 pm
It needs a pelican crossing it's a type of pedestrian crossing with traffic signals for both pedestrians and vehicular traffic, activated by call buttons for pedestrians, with the walk signal being directly across the road from the pedestrian.
Christopher Evans
Tuesday 5th December 2023 at 3:11 pm
Well done Helen.
Berkeley Thirsk
Wednesday 6th December 2023 at 9:32 pm
The crossing appears well advertised - I suggest that any one using the crossing exercises common sense and doesn't set off to cross the road if there are approaching vehicles. As a driver in the area I find many pedestrians set off crossing the road expecting vehicles to stop without warning..
Vince Chadwick
Thursday 7th December 2023 at 12:47 pm
Maybe those pedestrians who set off across the crossing when cars are coming are fed up of waiting by the kerb in vain for the traffic to stop for them?
According to the Highway Code, drivers are SUPPOSED to stop if pedestrians are waiting to cross, but they don't have to. However, if there is a pedestrian ON the crossing (even on the very beginning of it), the driver HAS to stop.
Obviously there is risk for the pedestrian if they don't take great care if they do this, especially in view of the speeds reported elsewhere of some of the traffic through Chelford village.
So it seems the sensible solution is, as suggested above, is a Pelican Crossing with traffic signals for both drivers and pedestrians which both must obey.

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