‘Frustrated’ residents speak out to put the brakes on Victoria Park Road speeding

Romney Taylor speaks at 23 January council meeting. Photograph: Ed Sheridan.

Residents have called on Hackney Council to take measures to reduce speeding on Victoria Park Road.

Local resident Romney Taylor voiced collective “frustration” in a deputation to the full council meeting on 23 January, calling for “a road where we can walk our children to school safely, where the air quality is healthy, where we don’t feel fear when trying to get infants safely into our cars, or feel bullied by speeding lorries when cycling to work”.

The deputation, which was introduced by Cllr Penny Wrout (Lab, Victoria, called for measures such as cameras, chicanes, prominent signage to keep vehicles at or below the 20mph limit, adding weight restrictions to keep lorries away and building a cycle path.

Taylor said: “My partner and I have a five-month-old baby girl, and while my partner was pregnant with our daughter, she was almost hit by a speeding car outside our house.

“Victoria Park is a racetrack, a commercial vehicle shortcut, a pollution hotspot, and a real danger zone. I’ve noticed the noise levels increasing dramatically, and the traffic now causes our home to vibrate.

“Multiple coaches come from Stansted at all hours of the day and night. Hackney is setting standards for reducing air pollution, but unfortunately this traffic using our residential street as a cut-through has caused the road to exceed pollution limits.”

Citing the case of Shivon Watson, 28, who was crushed to death by a skip lorry on the Victoria Park Road roundabout as she cycled to work in 2010, Taylor added: “Do we really have to wait for more deaths on the road for anything to be done?”

Between 11,000 and 12,000 vehicles per day use the road to enter London via the A12, with 28 crashes over a three-year period ending in December 2017 in which people were injured, according to statistics presented by the campaign, with almost half of the crashes attributed to speeding.

Roughly 93 per cent of vehicles using the road exceed the speed limit. Taylor claims minimal signage exacerbates the problem.

Addressing the deputees, Cllr Feryal Demirci (Lab, Hoxton East & Shoreditch), Deputy Mayor and cabinet member for health, social care, transport and parks, said: “Thank you for highlighting this really important issue of speeding on Hackney’s roads.

“Hackney Council takes speeding and road safety very seriously, and continues to implement measures to make roads safer.

“At a recent meeting with Transport for London (TfL), we raised the issue of speeding as a serious issue, and particularly in relation to the traffic coming off the A12 and into Hackney.

“We also highlighted that it was totally unacceptable that the number of road accidents has increased in Hackney, and we want to work with TfL to look at measures to tackle this.

“On the issue of cameras, as TfL is responsible for installing street cameras and police for monitoring them, we will lobby Tfl on behalf of the residents to install them along Victoria Park Road.

“Officers have already begun conversations with TfL and police on this, and have asked them to review signage along the entire length of the road, paying attention to the areas where most speeding takes place, and are looking at the possibility of installing chicanes.

“As Victoria Park Road is an A-road, we will not be able to restrict HGVs to ensure they don’t end up using the smaller side roads, so that’s unfortunately something we won’t be able to meet.

“A cycle lane will require a resident consultation, and we’re happy to explore this.”



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