PCC supports improvements to Redbourn Road with ‘immediate action to be taken’

Cllr Annie Brewster at the west end of the Redbourn Road. Picture: Annie Brewster

Cllr Annie Brewster at the west end of the Redbourn Road. Picture: Annie Brewster - Credit: Archant

A campaign to reduce deaths and injuries on a notorious accident blackspot between St Albans and Redbourn has received the backing of the county’s police commissioner.

David Lloyd has this week shown his support after Harpenden rural county councillor Annie Brewster’s bid for a segregated cycle lane on the A5183 was not successful within this summer’s Government’s Active Travel Emergency Fund.

READ MORE: Herts county council rejects A5183 Redbourn Road cycle lane for funding application

Following scrutiny and assessment by the Hertfordshire Road Safety Partnership (HRSP) and the PCC’s office, Cllr Brewster’s application to explore ways to improve safety for all road users was successful. As a result, the PCC has agreed to use his Road Safety Fund to support various initiatives, in a phased approach.

The phased plan is to first deploy the PCC’s new road safety mobile camera vans at various points along the Redbourn Road to capture speed and volume data and issue notices to those breaching the speed limit. Information captured will determine whether any new measures are required.

The bid is to support specific safety measures to complement Herts county council’s longer-term plans for introducing a new segregated cycle lane and footpath as part of their Active Travel works along the entire road.

RELATED STORY: Walking and cycling set to be improved with clearer 20mph guidance on Hertfordshire roadsThe Police and Crime Commissioner commented: “I am very aware of public safety concerns on this section of the former Watling Street as a main arterial link between communities to the west of St Albans and feel this staged approach will enable some immediate action to be taken. Every death or serious injury is one too many and I am delighted to be able to support the local county councillor’s campaign.”

Cllr Brewster added: “I am immensely grateful the HRSP and the PCC have, so quickly, responded to the significant community concerns on this stretch of road and applaud this approach that can commence imminently.

“We have seen 18 deaths since 1980, the most recent major crash in October 2019, claiming the lives of two people. The danger on this road is twofold, the speed vehicles travel and the lack of concentration drivers maintain on such a wide expanse of road with some challenging bends and filter lanes that encourage risky overtaking.

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“Unlike the majority of our narrower rural roads, a following car cannot easily see the pronounced curve a vehicle in front takes in avoiding a cyclist.

“Many people have lost their lives or been seriously injured this way; hence a segregated cycle lane is vital in keeping cyclist safe and in reducing the carriageway’s width.

“The PCC’s support will address excessive speeds and a further bid to Hertfordshire County Council has resulted in a grant of circa £20k to embark on a full feasibility study to establish how a segregated cycle lane may be introduced along this road so it can be implemented once active travel funding is available.

“Support for a cycle lane has been universal from our District and County Councillors and has been backed by Redbourn Parish Council who have pledged £2,500 towards the study and by Active in Redbourn who instigated a public petition that reached over 1,800 concerned residents’ signatures within days.”