Safety measures urged to stop child fatality on roads

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A child fataility could happen in Lower Beeding if road safety measures are not introduced, a campaigning grandparent has warned.

Gevin White, who lives in Leechpond Hill, believes changes are needed and has collected more than 200 signatures backing his proposals.

JPCT 020713 S13270092x Lower Beeding. Gevin White with petition -photo by Steve Cobb

JPCT 020713 S13270092x Lower Beeding. Gevin White with petition -photo by Steve Cobb

In particular he is lobbying for a 40mph limit to be imposed on roads leading into the village, and a 30mph limit at the top of Leechpond Hill around the road’s crossing near the Plough Inn.

“How do you think the village would feel to lose somebody? What if it was a child or a parent?” he said.

“This is about the parents and the children that we will protect.”

Because of a kink in the road coming up the hill, the speed of oncoming vehicles, and the narrowness of the pavement, he believes the crossing is not safe for children.

Mr White has two grandchildren who live in the village and says as a parent and grandparent he felt something had to be done.

He explained: “We want this area to be 30mph. We want the children to have a chance. The lorries could easily whip a pushchair quite easily.”

The road layout was altered after Horsham District Council gave permission for 31 homes behind the Plough Inn.

However, residents were under the impression that a new roundabout was included in the scheme at the Sandygate Lane, Handcross Road, and Leechpond Hill junction.

Stephanie Goate is a mum of three girls who all attend Holy Trinity Church of England Primary School in Lower Beeding’s Church Close.

“There’s a lot of children walking to and from the school and the traffic is horrendous and they need some calming strategies,” she said.

“It’s a matter of time, someone is going to get killed on this road.”

Mick Bedford, 71, from Mill Lane, who worked as Lower Beeding’s litter warden from 1997 to 2013, said he packed in the job amidst safety fears on the village’s roads.

He said: “It was OK a few years back but traffic has got so busy and I was beginning to worry about my safety.”

“Sooner or later someone is going to run into the back of it [his car]. The cars going past they go down Leechpond Hill like it’s a racetrack.”

He continued: “It was getting to the stage where I thought I’m going to have an accident. Sooner or later I could end up in East Surrey Hospital.”

Mr White said many people had expressed frustration in the village at not being able to get out of their roads.

To sign the petition email parish@gevinwhite.co.uk