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Quiet street 'absolutely horrendous' due to NDR traffic say residents

PUBLISHED: 09:46 20 December 2019 | UPDATED: 08:57 21 December 2019

Early morning commuters on Drayton Wood Road. Residents say the traffic is

Early morning commuters on Drayton Wood Road. Residents say the traffic is "horrendous". Picture: Kingsley Avenell

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People living on a quiet residential street say it has become an "absolutely horrendous" rat run for the controversial Northern Distributor Road (NDR).

Kingsley Avenell, 52, compared Drayton Wood Road to the A47 following the introduction of the NDR. Picture: Ruth LawesKingsley Avenell, 52, compared Drayton Wood Road to the A47 following the introduction of the NDR. Picture: Ruth Lawes

Traffic on Drayton Wood Road in Hellesdon has become "unbearable" according to homeowners due to drivers from Reepham Road and Drayton High Road using the street as a cut through to the NDR.

Concerns have grown over the volume of traffic, noise pollution, damage to the surrounding area and safety, particularly for students who use a footpath to Hellesdon High School.

Pinching points were introduced to calm traffic, but residents say they are ineffective and one has been smashed. Picture: Ruth LawesPinching points were introduced to calm traffic, but residents say they are ineffective and one has been smashed. Picture: Ruth Lawes

Neil Collins, retired, has lived on the street for 35 years. The 61-year-old led a six week campaign in November this year, which saw residents park their cars on the road to deter traffic.

He said: "The traffic is absolutely horrendous. I won't allow my grandchildren to play on the street now for more than ten seconds as it is dangerous where as four years ago they played there all the time. It must be so frightening for children, they are scared to even cross the road."

Residents have witnessed car damage including smashed wing mirrors and bonnets. Picture: Kingsley AvenellResidents have witnessed car damage including smashed wing mirrors and bonnets. Picture: Kingsley Avenell

Kingsley Avenell, a user support manager at the John Innes Centre, has monitored traffic using a CCTV camera for four months and has calculated an average number of 360 vehicles an hour during peak time compared to one vehicle every 30 minutes before the NDR.

The 52-year-old said: "The volume of traffic has increased exponentially. It can take five minutes to get off the drive. I've got the A47 outside my door now."

People living on Drayton Wood Road lead a guerilla campaign which saw them park on the road to block traffic. Picture: Ruth LawesPeople living on Drayton Wood Road lead a guerilla campaign which saw them park on the road to block traffic. Picture: Ruth Lawes

He added frustrated motorists often drive on the pavement and damage the green verges, forcing him to place a bright white boulder to stop cars.

Trevor Clarke, 78, has lived on the road for 28 years but said: "If I was younger I would move. I sleep in the front room and the noise is so loud. I have to keep my windows shut at all times which means my electricity bill has gone through the roof."

A spokesperson for Norfolk County Council said: "Monitoring on Drayton Wood Road has shown an 8.4pc increase in traffic since the Broadland Northway was built. We have also seen a reduction in the number of HGVs using Drayton Wood Road and other roads in the area."

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