Stop groaning about slow speeds, concentrate on safety on Shropshire’s roads

A joint post from Kate King, Lib Dem candidate for Burnell in the May Shropshire Council elections, and Andy Boddington, Shropshire Councillor for Ludlow North.

Local representatives are calling for a greater priority for safety on the roads of a county where traffic speeds are above the national average. New government statistics show that only eight council areas in England achieved faster speeds on A roads than Shropshire in 2015. In 2015 also, statistics reveal that more than half the injuries on the county’s roads were on A roads (423 of 796 injuries).

Kate and Andy are calling for improvements to safety on the A49. They think that we don’t need to drive any faster, we should concentrate on reducing deaths and cutting injuries.

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Ludlow town buses – our community room on wheels – are to keep going

We live in era of draconian cuts to local public services. Cuts to bus routes have always been on the agenda of Shropshire Council. Many councillors see them primarily as a cost to the public purse. These are councillors that almost never catch buses.

Here in Ludlow, our town services are social service, keeping people active and independent. The good news is that both the 701 and the 722 will be continue to be subsidised by Shropshire Council for the time being. I reckon that’s for a year at least.

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Update on roadworks at top of Station Drive – a response from Western Power

Councillor Tracey Huffer and I have expressed our frustration at the length of time it is taking for roadworks at the junction of Station Drive with Upper Galdeford and Gravel Hill. Most of the time there are no workers on the site – except for the operative who sits in a van all day in case the temporary traffic lights fail. Town buses inbound to the town centre are being diverted via Weeping Cross and Old Street in an attempt to keep to timetable.

Now Western Power has responded to our complaints. Here is the company’s statement:

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No contractors in sight as Ludlow traffic blocked by roadworks

For more than two weeks, works by Western Power have been disputing traffic at the junction of Station Drive, Upper Galdeford and Gravel Hill. This is essential work to replace power cables. That’s fine but there are usually no contractors on duty.

Along with everyone else, we have got very annoyed by this. This is what we told the press earlier today.

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Highways England to close A49 overnight from Monday – bizarre diversions need urgent action

We have an urgent need to repainted road markings and road studs along the A49 north and south of Ludlow. The markings at the junction of the A49 and the B4365 (the road across the racecourse), for example, are barely visible. The junction needs refreshed lines and new studs to reduce the risks of accidents.

At last the work is going to be done by Kier Highways, a company working for Highways England. The road will be closed from 9pm to 6am from Monday 31 October to Friday 11 November. But the diversions proposed are bizarre. The proposal is to divert all traffic, including HGVs onto the narrow residential streets of Craven Arms and Ditton Priors. At least, I think that is what Kier is proposing in the most confusing letter I have received since becoming a councillor.

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