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Two year road safety campaign pays off

PUBLISHED: 16:41 13 March 2008 | UPDATED: 10:37 03 July 2010

ROAD SAFETY SUCCESS: Ann Franklin, left, has campaigned for two years to get a school crossing on Beach Road, Caister. Also pictured are her son Max, seven, and lollipop lady Tracy Handley

ROAD SAFETY SUCCESS: Ann Franklin, left, has campaigned for two years to get a school crossing on Beach Road, Caister. Also pictured are her son Max, seven, and lollipop lady Tracy Handley

Laura Bagshaw

A CAISTER woman has given her backing to a new crossing outside a school in the village following a two- year campaign to improve road safety in the area.

A CAISTER woman has given her backing to a new crossing outside a school in the village following a two- year campaign to improve road safety in the area.

Ann Franklin, of Lacon Road, believes pupils and parents “feel safer” walking to and from school since the crossing was introduced two weeks ago.

A lollipop lady now stands at the busy Beach Road crossing, which leads to Caister first, middle and high schools, helping youngsters cross safely, and double yellow lines have been painted to stop cars blocking the road.

However, safety improvements “did not happen overnight”, as it was the result of a two-year campaign by a parent concerned about the amount of traffic using the road.

Mrs Franklin's son started at Caister First School in September 2005. She said: “The road was very dangerous to cross and it was very busy because it leads to three schools.”

In February 2006, she made her fears about safety known to Norfolk County Council, the authority responsible for crossing patrols.

“I was told the situation at the school would be monitored but by November I still hadn't heard a thing.”

Mrs Franklin enlisted the help of Great Yarmouth MP Tony Wright and a month later the county council said it would carry out a survey on Beach Road.

“The county council said not enough children were using the crossing,” said Mrs Franklin, who is also a school governor.

She continued putting pressure on the council, which agreed to do another survey. The second survey, in January 2007, concluded the road needed a crossing as more pupils were using it.

However, part of the road needed painting with double yellow lines and the project had missed that year's budget.

Mr Wright persuaded the council to include the improvements in last year's budget.

And on Wednesday, February 20, yellow lines were painted on Beach Road, signalling the end of a long and arduous campaign.

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