Frustrated parents of schoolchildren using a ‘hazardous’ bus stop have taken matters into their own hands by using their own money to install traffic signs in their village.
It is more than a year since residents in Guilden Sutton - whose children use a local bus stop to travel to Upton High School - first asked Cheshire West and Chester Council (CWaC) to install a proper shelter at the bus stop they believe is extremely dangerous.
But despite securing funding in principle for a shelter from Guilden Sutton Parish Council, they were simply told it ‘wasn’t possible’, so the community decided to spend their own money on signs that encourage motorists to drive slower down Guilden Sutton Lane.
Resident Steve Lloyd told The Chronicle the community has installed two signs to slow traffic down and warn drivers of children crossing over to a bus stop.
“This issue dates back to September 2016 when a near miss was reported,” he said. “Since then we have lobbied the parish council, who agreed in principle to fund a bus shelter, the council and the highways department.
“The last correspondence from the chief executive of the council stated it wasn’t possible to install a shelter in the existing location. Nor was there an alternative location to place such a structure.”
Mr Lloyd added: “We find this unacceptable, so have invested in signs to try and slow traffic down but this is far from ideal. It’s a health and safety issue first and foremost - we need a satisfactory solution.”
The community have raised a number of concerns about the bus stop, including the speed of cars, an overgrown hedgerow, an obscured view from drivers approaching Guilden Sutton from the Hoole dual carriageway, and the road being so narrow that large vehicles encroach on the verge to avoid oncoming traffic.
Residents also say there have been a number of incidents reported of cars mounting the kerb near the bus stop, and poor visibility in the dark winter months is also a concern.
Mr Lloyd added: “We will continue to campaign for a safe, well lit bus shelter to protect the current and future students using this service, one that is located in a position that satisfies all interested parties.”
However, Cllr Karen Shore, Cabinet member for environment, told The Chronicle: “Following comments about the bus stop in Guilden Sutton Lane, we have conducted a survey of the bus stop to establish the amount of use it has at various times during the day and the physical suitability for a bus shelter.
“Following the survey, the trees and hedge were cut back to increase the waiting space.
“Shelters are provided where necessary and there is space to do so. There needs to be enough space either to the rear of the shelter, or in front of it. We would have no issue installing a shelter at the location, if there was enough space and it was safe to do so.
“Unfortunately the location of the current bus stop just isn’t wide enough, the flagged area and surrounding verge space is too small for the smallest bus shelter.”