Safety concerns after removal of traffic barrier

Michelle Brain and her son Thomas Brain, 12, by the missing crash barrier
Michelle Brain and her son Thomas Brain, 12, by the missing crash barrier

Worried parents in Bretch Hill say drivers who are using a pedestrian cut-through as a short cut are putting their children’s safety at risk.

Oxfordshire County Council’s Highways Department removed a barrier which separates Kenilworth Way from Bretch Hill after it became damaged just before Christmas, but parents fear their children could be knocked down by vehicles cutting through the gap.

One mum-of-two who did not wish to be named, said: “This road is used quite often as a short cut by children to St Joseph’s School and Orchard Fields School.

“My daughter is ten years old and walks to school.

“If the cars come round too fast they could hit the children, it’s only a matter of time. It’s an accident waiting to happen.”

She has written to Banbury MP Sir Tony Baldry and the council’s Highways Department but said she was told the barrier could not be replaced due to lack of available funds.

“Everyone in this road has two or three children and someone’s going to get hurt,” she said. “By taking five minutes off their journey, drivers are putting children’s lives in danger.

“Motorbikes are racing through there and there’s a six foot fence at the corner of Kenilworth Road meaning it’s a blind spot, so if they come round the corner too fast they won’t see the children.”

She is concerned the danger will only worsen as more children play in the street with the onset of summer.

Her friend Michelle Brain, also of Bretch Hill, said: “My main concern is I’ve got a child with disabilities who likes to go out to play. Some child is going to get killed.”