Cuts to safety improvements on road where blind man was hit

PUBLISHED: 07:45 22 February 2018

Ray Stevens, Mandy Palmer and Mark Regan campaiging for a crossing on Queens Road.

Ray Stevens, Mandy Palmer and Mark Regan campaiging for a crossing on Queens Road.

Archant

North Somerset Council has cut the amount of funding it agreed to pay to make safety improvements along a busy road in Nailsea after a blind man was seriously injured.

Ray Stevens, Mandy Palmer and Mark Regan campaiging for a crossing on Queens Road.Ray Stevens, Mandy Palmer and Mark Regan campaiging for a crossing on Queens Road.

The authority and Nailsea Town Council agreed to split the cost of a project to improve safety along Queens Road equally – up to a maximum of £50,000 each.

But North Somerset Council has since capped its share at £35,000, meaning fewer improvements will be made.

The campaign for safety improvements was launched by blind pensioner Ray Stevens in January 2014, who suffered a fractured skull 11 months later when he was hit by a car while crossing the road.

Town council clerk, Ian Morrell said: “The arrangement between the town council and North Somerset Council regarding safety improvements on Queens Road was to share the costs equally, to a maximum of £50,000 each.

“The proposed works are expected to cost £77,750.

“However, the North Somerset Council contribution has now been capped at £35,000. On the current estimate, this meant the town council contribution would needed to have been £42,750 for the agreed scope of works.”

Nailsea Town Council and North Somerset Council officers have drawn up a number of improvements for the road including building new islands and extending existing ones to ensure they are at least 2m wide.

A North Somerset Council spokesman said: “We have worked closely with Nailsea Town Council on this scheme.

“After negotiations, the scheme costs have been capped at £70,000 with the costs being split 50:50.

“The works are under way and we expect them to be completed in around four weeks.”

Mr Morrell added: “The safety improvements to Queens Road have been under discussion for a long time, and have been a priority for the town council.

“Based on original estimates of the costs, the town council had budgeted £50,000, on the proviso that North Somerset Council matched the contribution.

“Both parties worked closely on the agreed scheme, which came to a total cost of £77,500.

“North Somerset Council was only able to fund £35,000, which the town council has matched, meaning some cost savings on the works have had to be made.”

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