Monday, 27 September 2021

Bins could warn speeding drivers to slow down

RESIDENTS of Woodcote could be issued with stickers to put on their wheelie bins in a bid to deter drivers from speeding.

The parish council has suggested the idea after being approached by a supplier of the stickers, which would carry an image of a 30mph speed limit sign.

A bulk order of 500 would cost about £200 and this should be enough to cover every bin in streets where speeding is a big problem.

If villagers support the idea, the scheme could be rolled out before Christmas.

The council is targeting households in Reading Road, Greenmore, Bridle Path, Goring Road and South Stoke Road, most of which are approach roads into the village.

It says Goring Road, which runs through the centre of the village from the A4074 to Crays Pond, is the highest priority as it is crossed every day by pupils attending Langtree School and the village primary school and nursery.

Councillor Sarah McGurk said: “The supplier can offer the stickets in bulk ridiculously cheap so it makes perfect sense as long as people are happy. The cost is practically negligible.

“So far we’ve only made enquiries through Facebook but everyone has welcomed it, as have people from surrounding villages.

“Anything that raises awareness and gets people taking their feet off the accelerator has to be worth pursuing.

“We carried out some preliminary surveys and found that a small but significant number of people were speeding above 40mph on Goring Road, which shows that there’s a real need.”

More than 40 people praised the idea on the Wonderful Woodcote Facebook page and some also suggested reducing the speed limit to 20mph. Councillor McGurk said the council’s traffic advisory group, which was formed in 2014 as part of the village’s neighbourhood plan, would be announcing other traffic-calming measures.

The council also hopes to install a zebra crossing in Goring Road, near the Reading Road junction.

It has agreed to pay up to £25,000 and Oxfordshire County Council, the highways authority, has granted permission.

However, the work is on hold as the cost has proved to be higher than expected and the county council is investigating ways to make it more affordable. It says this will take some time because of staff shortages.

Cllr McGurk said: “We’re hounding the relevant authorities to push it along but in the interim these stickers should be a worthwhile investment, even if they only slow some cars down.”

A county council spokesman said: “The proposed crossing is a complex and potentially expensive scheme requiring additional work, including kerbing, drainage and footway alignment work.

“Our efforts to reduce costs are running in parallel with a large number of other requests from parish councils for similar projects.

“We have a limited number of staff that have been re-organised to ensure we meet local expectations.”

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