Action needed over 'danger' on route to Parkway station

November 24 2021
Action needed over 'danger' on route to Parkway station

Continuing concern over potential danger on the road from Norton to Worcestershire Parkway rail station have prompted the chairman of Norton-juxta-Kempsey Parish Council to offer to discuss the issue with senior figures at Worcestershire County Council.

Kevin Fincher said he had made the offer “on several occasions” but it had yet to be taken up.

The route in question, Church Lane, has been designated as an Active Travel Corridor (ATC) but parish councillors have repeatedly aired their dissatisfaction with it.

Mr Fincher said: “In concert with Worcestershire County Council Highways, the parish council created and agreed a plan several years ago to make the ATC between the new A4440 pedestrian bridge and Parkway Station suitable for use.

“This involved changing the junction priority at the Retreat pub, putting traffic lights on the adjacent railway bridge and creating new footpaths from the other side of the bridge to Parkway.

“Despite agreeing that the work should subsume the £10,000 that the parish council had received from the South Worcester Urban Extension (SWUE) development for traffic calming in Church Lane, nothing was delivered and the plan was shelved.”

He went on: “The ATC is currently dangerous in that it includes an under width – for two lines of traffic and a footpath – humpback bridge and no footpath from the bridge to Parkway along unlit country lanes which are currently used as a rat-run to avoid congestion on the A4440.

“Not only have we offered to brief seniors at Worcestershire County Council but we have, as a parish council, invited councillors to walk the route with us to demonstrate the unsuitable nature if it.

“None of the offers have been taken up.”

Fears there will be fatality

During a meeting of Norton-juxta-Kempsey Parish Council chairman Kevin Fincher said: “The idea that Church Lane is a 30mph limit because it’s an Active Travel Corridor is complete bunkum.

“I drive that road every day. I’m seeing more and more people walking that road and they’re in the road and there’s going to be a fatality.”

He was speaking in response to a comment by Linda Robinson, the Conservative county councillor representing the parish, who said she had been told the county council was unlikely to do anything about the situation due to the 30mph limit.

Parish councillor John Waizeneker told the meeting the dotted line along Church Lane indicating a cycle lane was potentially confusing.

He said as he was driving on the road he encountered someone coming from the other direction “who obviously thought the dotted line was the middle of the road”.