December 13 2013 Latest news:
Wednesday, September 25, 2013
Traders in a north Norfolk town are concerned informal crossings due to be built next month would create safety problems for drivers and pedestrians.
The two uncontrolled crossings which drop down from the kerb, will cost just over £16,000, and will be built on Station Road between the Sheringham Little Theatre and the clock tower and on Church Street between the theatre and Icarus Hines Butchers.
Barry Starling, chairman of the town’s chamber of trade, said some members thought they were a waste of money and were an “accident waiting to happen”.
Currently there are five similar crossings in the town centre which do not have signs but are made of red bricks.
Mr Starling said: “Pedestrians perceive they have the right of way. But they are not zebra crossings and there are no flashing lights. It is a bit confusing. Our safety of customers is paramount.”
He added the money could have been spent more wisely on something the town wanted, including the Sheringham Play Park revamp project.
Cliff Morris, owner of Whistlestop newsagents on Station Road where there is a similar construction, said it was not a “proper” crossing and cars were not obliged to stop for people who used it.
But town mayor Doug Smith said: “I am for the crossings. They are purely for disabled people and wheelchair users to be able to cross the road easily and safely.
“Bearing in mind the ageing population of Sheringham and its thousands of visitors, it is money well worth spending.”
The work on the Station Road crossing is due to take place between Monday, October 14 and Friday, October 18 and the Church Street work will be held between Monday, October 21 and Friday, October 25. Diversions will be put in place.
A Norfolk County Council spokesman said: “These are informal crossing points, with kerb build-outs and a clear crossing route for pedestrians. These work well in similar locations elsewhere, for example Sheringham High Street, and even in Norwich city centre on St Stephen’s Street.
“These crossing points are being provided because Sheringham has an elevated accident record for pedestrians, especially older people, when compared with Cromer.”