School walk safety fears sparks survey

Road safety concerns along Shootersway, Berkhamsted
Road safety concerns along Shootersway, Berkhamsted

Ways to encourage motorists to put the brakes on along a route used by schoolchildren are being investigated.

The move comes after a petition, spearheaded by resident Christine Knibb, calling for action along Shootersway in Berkhamsted was handed in to highways officials.

Berkhamsted and county councillor Ian Reay is backing the call for action and has spent £350 of his highways locality budget on speed and traffic volume surveys along the road.

During a meeting of the Herts County Council highways and waste management cabinet panel, officers agreed to take into consideration the results of the surveys – due any day now -–and consider what further action should be taken.

Mr Reay said: “When we have got that data we are going to have a discussion about what can be done to slow the traffic down.”

He believes the speeding issue has become a hot topic following the introduction of two tier education in Berkhamsted, which means Ashlyns has now been upgraded from a middle to secondary school, resulting in more youngsters than ever before using the road to walk to school. “There is a 30mph limit but there is a feeling that it is not being adhered to,” he said. “The footpaths are quite narrow and quite overgrown. It feels quite exposed and the pedestrians are worried about that.”

In the past three years there have been three minor accidents along the road. Highways officers have also agreed to support discussions with schools to determine if any improvements can be made to pedestrian routes and noted that a full inspection of footways in Shootersway will be undertaken by council officers.