Villagers invited to comment on safety measures for road

This story was published 13 June 2022

Villagers are being urged to give their views on proposals for a host of measures to improve safety on a route that straddles both North and West Yorkshire.

A map of the Sutton Lane proposals

Proposals for Sutton Lane between Sutton in Craven in North Yorkshire and Eastburn in the Bradford Metropolitan District Council authority area include new and improved warning signs to better alert drivers to pedestrians in the road, carriageway resurfacing and new road markings.

In addition, Bradford Metropolitan District Council proposes to improve its street lighting, extend a footway and introduce two traffic-calming build-outs to narrow the carriageway to further reduce speeds and give pedestrians extra protection.

These measures are designed to make all road users more aware of the prevailing hazards.

Local people are invited to a drop-in session at Sutton in Craven Community Centre on Tuesday, June 21, between 4pm and 7pm, where they will be able to review the proposals and speak to officers. In addition, details of the proposals can be seen here and comments sent to Area5.Skipton@northyorks.gov.uk and the plans will be publicised by the parish council.

The joint action by North Yorkshire and Bradford traffic and road safety engineers follows community concerns about pedestrian safety and the death of nine-year-old George Lewis in September last year in a collision with a vehicle as he walked along Sutton Lane with his father and brother.

Footways extend for short distances only along Sutton Lane from each village, leaving a central section of about 400 metres without footway or verge and with walls abutting the carriageway. Providing footways to connect the villages would require the purchase of private land. This has not been possible to date, but efforts to secure the additional land and explore alternatives continue.

Executive member for highways and transportation, Cllr Keane Duncan, said: “Our thoughts are with the family of George Lewis. His tragic death means it is particularly important for local people to have a say on these plans.

“While the constraints of the road limit the options, officers have been able to develop a scheme to better warn drivers of the presence of pedestrians and to provide pedestrians with as much space and security as possible.

“The proposed measures offer much-needed improvements that can be delivered quickly. We will strive to do even more by working in partnership with the community and our Bradford Council colleagues.”

Councillor Alex Ross-Shaw, Portfolio Holder for Regeneration, Planning and Transport for Bradford Metropolitan District Council, said: “This was a deeply sad and tragic incident and our thoughts remain with the family and friends of George Lewis.

“Working with our colleagues in North Yorkshire, we are very keen to do everything we can to prevent this from every happening again and encourage everyone to take part in the consultation which covers a range of additional proposed safety measures.”

If the public response to the proposals is favourable, arrangement are in place to begin the work as soon as possible.