Concerned mums hope to ‘save lives’ with Southwater crossing campaigns

JPCT 200913  Southwater crossing campaign, Near Castlewood school. Photo by Derek Martin
JPCT 200913 Southwater crossing campaign, Near Castlewood school. Photo by Derek Martin
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Two mums have started two separate campaigns to see pedestrian crossings introduced on Southwater roads in a bid to prevent children ‘dicing with death’ on their walk to school.

Local residents Ruth Tyerman and Karen Matthews have started online petitions to encourage the public to get behind them to see changes to both Worthing Road and Cedar Drive.

“I really am very concerned,” explained 51-year-old Karen from Millfield. “I know apparently it costs thousands, but I think to be honest this is quite important.

“We’re not asking for a hedge to be cut down or something, we could be saving lives by having some sort of crossing in place.”

Karen, who has children aged nine and ten-and-a-half, believes that new housing developments across Horsham will also see an increase in traffic making public safety an even bigger issue.

“With this Bovis home development I would imagine there are another 250 cars we can anticipate in the southern end of the village and there are no pedestrian crossings, zebra crossings, nothing,” added Karen, who currently has 38 signatures on her petition to see changes to Worthing road.

“There are just an awful lot of school children, and other people, dicing with death.”

Porchester Close resident, 36-year-old Ruth, has so far gathered 20 signatures in the campaign she started on September 3 which she hopes will see a permanent zebra crossing, or peak-time school crossing patrol, introduced to Cedar Drive near Castlewood Road.

“The road is becoming more dangerous due to the number of road users, more so in the peak times,” explained Ruth, who was alarmed by the ‘unsafe’ crossing when her son changed pre-school times to during morning rush hour.

“I witnessed children going to Southwater Junior Academy crossing when another mum, going to Castlewood school, nearly drove into them. Luckily she stopped but it was a cause for concern.”

Ruth, who has children aged two and four, added that her son and other children would like to ride bikes and scooters to their school but ‘blind spots’ and ‘residents’ tall hedges’ make it too hard to cross.

Her Facebook page, which can be found here , has also received 61 likes.

Both women have been tirelessly promoting their online petitions through Facebook, door-knocking and contacting local schools and residents to gather support in order to persuade West Sussex County Council that the crossings are required.

Karen continued: “My daughter will be using the bus services to Tanbridge or Millais next year and I think we’ve got to get something in now because something will happen to somebody.

“This isn’t something that should be sat on, it’s something that should be done as soon as possible.

“I think once I’ve got the public’s support, I’ve got something I could go to the council with and get their say to put it in the right direction,” added Karen.

“It’s always good to get people’s signatures backing something.”

For more about Karen’s petition or to sign it, click here

For more about Ruth’s petition or to sign it, click here

What do you think? Should there be more pedestrian crossings in Southwater?

Let us know in the comments below.