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Saturday, 23 May 2015

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Call to scrap pseudo crossings

A FORMER traffic policeman turned driving instructor has called for the scrapping of the two pseudo pedestrian crossings in Hexham’s Market Place.

'Council folly':One of the pseudo pedestrian crossings in Hexham's Market Place.

Allendale parish councillor Paul Murphy described the crossings as “an absolute council folly” at the October meeting of Northumberland County Council’s west area committee.

He said: “As a driving instructor, I must go through the Market Place 50 times a day, and I have lost count of the number of near misses I have seen there.

“No-one has any idea of who has priority – pedestrians or motorists – and they should be taken out as quickly as possible and replaced with a proper zebra crossing.”

He was supported by Coun. Ian Hutchinson, of Haltwhistle, who said that many people, particularly visitors, already treated them like full blown pedestrian crossings.

He said: “They just wander out into the road, and cars have to jam their brakes on.”

The crossings were introduced by the former Tynedale Council as part of a £150,000 scheme to modernise the Market Place.

They were speaking during the debate on traffic safety in Hexham, particularly in the vicinity of schools.

Coun. Murphy said: “What is really needed is a return to the old-fashioned school crossing patrols, where the lollipop man or woman would walk out into the middle of the road and ensure that everyone got across the road safely.”