Anger as B&NES cancels zebra crossing plan

Plans for a new zebra crossing on Radstock Road in Midsomer Norton have been cancelled by B&NES Council, sparking anger from local councillors and residents the area.

The zebra crossing was to be installed to make it safer and easier for children walking to and from Welton Primary School across the A362 Radstock Road and had the backing of local Conservative councillors Barry Macrae and Michael Evans, as well as former councillor Shirley Steel.

However, at a recent public Cabinet meeting questioning by Midsomer Norton councillor Michael Evans (Cons, MSN North) revealed that the Liberal Democrat councillor in charge of transport no longer intends to proceed with the plans.

At the February B&NES Open Cabinet meeting, Councillor Evans asked why provision for the zebra crossing had not appeared on the Council’s register of capital projects, despite the public being informed at a PACT meeting in 2011 that it was to go ahead. In response, Lib Dem Cabinet Member for Transport Cllr Roger Symonds stated that, despite it being by a Primary and nursery school, too few people cross the road at the location for a zebra crossing to be justified, though the plans may be considered again in future.

Following the meeting, Cllr Evans said he was unhappy with the Council’s response. He said:

“Residents in the area were told last year that plans for this new zebra crossing were to go ahead, so it’s extremely unfair for the council to just cancel these plans with no further consultation or information provided to the public.

“Barry, Shirley and I supported these plans because many local parents and residents said that a pedestrian crossing was needed on Radstock Road to make it safer and easier for children to walk to Welton Primary School and the nursery there.

“I’m naturally very disappointed that the council has decided to axe these plans, and I know that residents in the area will be angry with the way it has been handled by B&NES. I raised the matter again at the last Full Council meeting and will continue to press for the scheme to go ahead.”