Near misses prompt families to step up their campaign for 'vital' Cranbrook Road crossing

July 28 2016

Parents and children came out in force to highlight the risk of injury crossing Redland’s Cranbrook Road


Parents and children came out in force to highlight the risk of injury crossing Redland’s Cranbrook Road. A petition has been set up for a safe crossing to be provided near the junction of Harcourt Hill and Cairns Road, following two near-miss accidents this year.

Mother, and campaign leader, Clare Freshwater-Turner, said: “It’s safety, for our children and for everyone’s children who live in this neighbourhood. Every day I watch children cross this road on their own and it’s just not safe. We’ve had a small child being hit by a car and we don’t want that to happen again.”

Nine-year-old Rowan Surrey was walking to Westbury Park School with her mother and younger brother, when she was hit by a car near Harcourt Hill. Although Rowan landed on the bonnet of the car, she was physically uninjured.

Rowan is not the only child who has had a lucky escape. Redland Green parent, Nina Higgins, explained: “My son did get hit very lightly - he could have used the pelican crossing but he was in a bit of a rush and got a bit of knock. I’ve lost two cats on this road and my dog’s been hit but survived. It is a major concern.”

At present there are two designated areas to cross Cranbrook Road and quite a distance between them. The road is a regular route for parents and children attending local schools, including Westbury Park, Redland Green and Bishop Road and the playgroup at Cairns Road.

Rachel Marawah, a mother of children at Westbury Park Primary, said: “It’s a really busy road and it’s just difficult to cross and that’s for an adult, so I can imagine with children, it’s even more difficult. Even though there’s a 20mph limit, no one travels at 20, and it’s quite difficult to travel at 20 on such a straight, wide road. 

Parent, Ali Ng, added: “I use this road all the time to go to the toddler group at Cairns Road. Also, my older one comes across the road to visit friends after school. It’s always so hard to cross. There are cars up and down here all the time, much faster than 20mph and even people on bikes come down here quite fast as it’s quite a slope. I’d just like to see a nice, safe zebra crossing that everyone can see when they are approaching.”

Redland ward councillor, Martin Fodor, has been a keen supporter of the campaign since residents alerted him to the accident risk and recent collisions by speeding cards. 

He said:“Even one serious accident would be too many, so I’ve been looking for ways we can get the project progressed with better information about traffic speeds, an appraisal of the options for a crossing, and then making sure the project gets prioritised for funding. It’s frustrating that the council has such limited resources now that we only get one project per neighbourhood per year (that’s across three local wards) so we need to make sure these are where they are most needed.”

Clare Freshwater-Turner believes the campaign is off to a good start. “Everyone seems to be listening. 

The one thing we do seem to hear is ‘there’s no money, there’s no budget’ but I do hope that the council hear how many people think it’s important to do something about this issue. We’ve got over 300 signatures, we have lots of emails from residents, the schools are supportive, and the police are supportive. 

"Everyone’s on our side - I just hope that the council will listen and do something about the safety issue,” she said.

The petition can be signed by children as well as adults and is now live at: /Make Crossing Cranbrook RoadSafe