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There have been a number of near misses and collisions in the Meole Brace and Radbrook areas of the town in recent years, where around 3,000 children go to school.

Such was the concern in the community, two campaign groups formed to call for safer roads – Radbrook Road Safety and the Meole Traffic Group.

Shropshire Council’s Ffion Horton discusses the plans

Now Shropshire Council has revealed proposals which aim to make roads safer and improve active travel, encouraging parents to trust that their children can get to and from school safely.

The plans include extra crossings near the Roman Road roundabout and Longden Road, separate cycle and pedestrian lanes in Bank Farm Road and the moving of the bus stop near the Co-op in Radbrook, which has been the site of a number of accidents and near misses due to its proximity to the car park entrance.

Drawings were revealed at the Trinity Centre in Meole Brace ahead of going online for public consultation.

Angela Warren, whose son Joe was injured when a car knocked him off his bike, casted an eye over the plans

It was Angela Warren who initially rallied the Radbrook Road Safety group after her son Joe, a former pupil at The Priory School, was hit by a car, suffering a leg injury. His bike was left mangled by the incident.

She was positive about the plans, saying: “Amazing, really good. Really happy with the crossings, the bus stop being moved and the cycle lanes.”

Asked what her main concern is regarding road safety in the area, she said: “Speeding. Getting the speeding down. But I think with all the crossings it’s going to reduce speed hopefully.”

Councillors Chris Lemon and Julia Evans were at the Trinity Centre to inspect the plans and speak to residents

A number of vehicle-activated signs have been put up on Bank Farm Road, and a number of residents are encouraged with the impact they have had on driver behaviour.

Radbrook councillor Chris Lemon said: “We think that has already brought down road speeds. We hope these improvements, which hopefully will get funding at some point, will make a big difference as well.”

Councillor Lemon also felt the new proposals would provide a “vast improvement” on road safety.

Shropshire Council’s Ffion Horton discusses the plans

“These plans will make travelling around Radbrook and Bank Farm Road safer for cyclists, pedestrians and road users as well because it tries to separate them out.

“At the moment, the cycleway and the footpath along Bank Farm Road is shared. There will be a little kerb along that cyclepath so the cyclists will be next to the road and the pedestrians will be by the hedge along there and we think that will make things a lot safer for everybody when it comes to active travel along Bank Farm Road.”

He added: “We think that it’s not perfect but we think it’s 75-80 per cent there. We are reasonably happy with these. It is, in our eyes, a vast improvement on what’s there now, and it will make things safer.”

Changes will also be made to Longden Road

Shropshire Council officer Ffion Horton, who has been consulting campaigners as plans were being drawn up, shared more information on what stage the project is at.

“Roman Road island we are consulting on but we do have the build budget for that,” she said.

“The same with the crossings at Sweetlake Meadow. For Bank Farm Road we had money from Active Travel England to draw up a detailed design pre-construction and our next action is, if the community support it, we’ll go back to Active Travel England or other grant providers and say ‘this is a fully designed scheme, here are the exact construction costs, here’s the opinion of the locals, here’s the opinion of the users, please give us the build costs’.

“Having the community on board is really key. They want the grant providers to know that it’s not just the council imposing a design, it’s actually something we’ve worked on with the community for four or five years.”

A drawing of the Roman Road roundabout proposed changes

She added: “It takes a long time. It started off with the meeting and we got a few things very quickly, but it takes a while to get the money and then to design it.

“We didn’t want to do something cheap and quick. We want to do something long lasting and that’s going to be really good quality for the children.

“We’ve for 3,000 kids coming and going from different schools. We’ve got a new school being built up in Squinter Pip Way (Bowbrook Primary School). There is more development planned around here. We need to future-proof it.

A drawing of proposed changes to Bank Farm Road

“Along with a lot of education we’re going to be doing with the schools, this will allow them to have a nice piece of infrastructure. We’re going to do some planting, some new lighting, and make it feel very nice.”

The plans are due to appear on Shropshire Council’s “Have Your Say” page in the coming days.

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