Holbeach St Johns' accident blackspot to have speed monitor set up there
A spate of accidents at two road junctions in Holbeach St Johns has led to action in a bid to slow down drivers.
During a virtual meeting of Holbeach Parish Council on Monday, members agreed to set up a speed indicator sign on the B1168 Jekils Bank where two junctions are causing problems for drivers.
According to villager Alan Piggins (75), who has lived in Holbeach St Johns for 37 years, "six or seven" accidents have taken place at the junction of Jekils Bank and New River Gate, near Fenland Airfield, in the last two months.
He said: "In the last three months there have been six to seven accidents on the N|ew River Gate corner.
"The speeding is at its worst between 6.30am and 8.30am and 4pm to 6pm.
“The signs on the corner have been knocked down through the accidents, thus people have end up in the sewage plant or the field.
“A lot of people in the village won’t know what’s going on, but those who do know aren’t happy about it because people are just tearing round the bends and into the village.”
Mr Piggins also raised concerns about the junction of Raven's Gate and Joys Bank where a car left the road and crashed into a bungalow last December.
He has raised the issue at parish, district, county council and parliamentary levels, leading to a site visit by Holbeach Rural division county councillor Peter Coupland and a highways officer on Monday afternoon.
As a result, Mr Piggins is hoping to raise awareness of the work undertaken by the group with the council and the police.
Speaking to parish councillors on Monday night, Coun Peter Sparkes said: "A number of parishioners are very concerned by how fast drivers are entering Holbeach St Johns.
"They have suggested that we deploy our reactive speed signs in a bid to convince people that speed is an issue.
"So we can try and help the parishioners get some safety down there."
Coun Coupland said: "I have been working for some time with residents and Holbeach parish councillors in order to gain data on the speeding traffic along Jekils Bank, including the use of a interactive speed unit to gain that data to give to Lincolnshire Road Safety Partnership (LRSP).
"This data will be used to analyse traffic flow and speeds to enable the LRSP to review and look to consider measures to help stop speeding and possible accidents.
"I am also working with the Lincolnshire County Council highways management, who work in tandem with LRSP, to devise a way forward."
LRSP spokesman John Siddle said: "We are working with Holbeach Parish Council and the local highways team to make traffic safer on the B1168.
"We are hoping to find a suitable location on the road to install a flashing speed sign to help slow traffic and the local highways team will be renewing the lines and chevrons to improve visibility of the bend in the road."
. High Street survey has 'started a conversation'
The author of an online poll about easing traffic flows in Holbeach town centre has at least “started a conversation” about improving High Street.
Nearly 80 people completed the poll, drafted by planning committee vice chairman Coun Sophie Hutchinson, on the back of a South Holland District Council-led bid for at least £4million of government cash to revitalise Holbeach.
Of those who responded, 44 people favoured traffic calming measures along High Street, including wider pavements and a pedestrian crossing.
Another 33 people wanted to see traffic restrictions, limiting both the number and type of vehicles using High Street at certain times of the day.
During Monday’s meeting, Coun Hutchinson said: “It wasn’t really feasible to do an in-person consultation so we did it on the parish council’s Facebook page.
“It’s started a conversation and, moving forward, people’s priorities are to keep two-way traffic flows through the town.”
The district council is still to hear whether its bid for Future High Streets Fund backing has been successful but if it is, Coun Hutchinson said that more surveys would be done to find out how the public feel the money should be spent.
"If we do get the money, there will be consultations that will need to be done and I think it would be a good idea if we, as a parish council, could be involved in them."
. Opposition to plan for new takeaway
An objection has been raised to plans for part of the former Swepstones butcher’s shop in Holbeach to become a takeaway.
Up to three new jobs could be created at the proposed takeaway in High Street, which would be open six days a week.
But Coun Eddie McNally said members wanted to “put a block” on it due to the number of existing takeaways in the town.
. Tree planting idea for public
Holbeach may become the tree capital of South Holland after parish councillors agreed to a “big push” in planting them.
Coun Peter Sparkes told members about environmental charity, The Woodland Trust, and its efforts to have more tree planted nationally.
He said: “There seems to be a big push to get more trees planted and I wonder if this is something we could try to engage with our parishioners and also cut our CO2 emissions."
. New boiler for Coubro Chambers
A new boiler is to be fitted at the parish council offices in West End after complaints about cold rooms.
Members agreed to use some of a £9,000 rent surplus from properties owned by the parish council to replace the boiler which has been in place at Coubro Chambers for at least 15 years.
Coun Peter Sparkes said: “Given the age of the boiler, it’s just common sense that we look at installing a new one.”
. Recycling day for Christmas trees
People in Holbeach are to get the chance to have their Christmas trees recycled and make a donation to charity.
Parish councillors will invite a tree surgeon to visit Holbeach town centre in early January and collect unwanted festive trees from households.
Coun Graham Rudkin said: “I think it's a great idea and it’ll save people a trip to the tip so it's a win-win situation.”