Residents’ misery at road improvements

St Antonys Avenue Speed Bump SUS-140813-224211001
St Antonys Avenue Speed Bump SUS-140813-224211001

Families living along a notorious rat run say a so-called traffic calming scheme is wrecking their lives and their homes.

Drivers trying to avoid congestion on Seaside use St Philip’s Avenue as an alternative route. But residents say a raised road platform - similar to a road hump but bigger and longer - means their nights are disrupted by noise and cracks are appearing in their walls.

Jan Robinson said, “This doesn’t slow people down at all - in fact I think some drivers speed up for fun. Lots of heavy traffic uses the road, especially large vehicles on their way to the recycling plant and the industrial site. They’re not supposed to come along here until after 10am but they do, I’ve seen them. The buses aren’t so bad - they do at least go quite slowly. It’s become a nightmare - we have to sleep at the back of the house, and most of our neighbours do the same thing as the noise at the front is dreadful. I’ve tried to measure it, and I’ve also written to the council, but I’ve had no useful information back.”

The platform has been in position for about three years and residents accept that some form of traffic calming is necessary to keep pedestrians and schoolchildren safe.

But Jan said this one fails on all counts and the intense vibration it generates is causing structural damage with cracks appearing in inside and outside walls.

A county council spokesman said, “The raised table in St Philip’s Avenue was installed in 2010 as part of a set of measures introduced in response to a petition from the residents. This feature was chosen in this location following public consultation.

“An independent consultant considered the impact of vehicles travelling over the traffic calming feature and concluded there was no structural damage being caused to the properties and that the speed table was not causing unacceptable levels of vibration. We don’t have any plans to make any changes at the present time.”