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Call for lower speed limit

van crash, Baythorne End
van crash, Baythorne End

After a van crashed through the wall of his house, a man is asking residents to help make an historically dangerous stretch of road safer.

Warren Brace, 32, of Hunnex Green in Baythorne End, Halstead, has organised a petition to Essex County Council to reduce the speed limit on the A1017 between Baythorne End and Sturmer.

Warren Brace on a fast stretch of road in Baythorne End ANL-151003-092152001
Warren Brace on a fast stretch of road in Baythorne End ANL-151003-092152001

The limit is currently set at the national speed limit of 60 miles per hour. Mr Brace would like to see this reduced to 40 miles per hour with a 30 mile per hour zone at the junction with Station Road.

Mr Brace who, along with his wife, Colette, is planning to start a family, started the petition after a van crashed through the wall of their house on March 10 last year.

After speaking to neighbours, Mr Brace discovered this was not an isolated incident.

“They said, ‘oh, you’re living in car-crash cottage’,” said Mr Brace. “It’s an historic problem going back to the 70s.

“When it happened, we we’re in bed. Luckily, no one was downstairs. A fence post flew up and broke our bedroom window.”

Mr Brace blames fast moving traffic on the narrow roads for the accident.

“There’s a huge volume of traffic,” he said. “It’s the main road linking Braintree, Haverhill and Cambridge. There are also quite a few business premises and haulage companies that use the road.

“Because it’s so winding, you get a lot of accidents. I think the council is oblivious to just how many incidents there are there.

“People go too fast and they can’t see the junction with Station Road.

“I’ve had people saying to me that they’ve had similar problems. The properties are right on the road, there aren’t even any pavements. You can’t go out of your own front gate.

“it’s very dangerous. People have had to leap out of the way of fast traffic while they’ve been trying to cut their hedges.

“There’s been a lot of support for the petition. Most people have said it’s about time something was done.”

A spokesman for Essex County Council said: “This would be looked at on a local level. Of course, if there’s a need and if the work’s feasible, we’re happy to look into it.”

People can access the petition at http://cmis.essexcc.gov.uk/essexcmis5/petitions/tabid/106/id/49/petition-to-reduce-the-speed-limit-on-the-a1017-and-joining-roads-between-sturmer-and-baythorne-end.aspx

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