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No crossing nor sigange at byway junction (Roudham BOAT 20 & RB 9)

Reported in the Roads/highways category anonymously at 13:19, Sat 6 April 2019

Sent to Highways England less than a minute later

Two public byways join the A 11 road here, directly opposite one another: Byway Open to All Traffic Number 20 from the south, and Restricted Byway Number 9 from the north.

There is no means of crossing the A11 road, to gain access between the two byways. There is a continuous metal barrier running along the centre of the A 11 dual carriageway road. That barrier is about waist height. The attached, recent photographs show the crash barrier.

Moreover, there is no signage to indicate that either byway leaves the road here, nor any advance warning signage along the A 11 road. I stood here to take the photographs, with motor traffic rushing past me at 70 m.p.h. and was concious that there was absolutely nothing to warn these motorists about the junction of the byways here, and of the presence of vulnerable byway users. I felt very vulnerable climbing over the central barrier. How would I have managed to cross had I been with a horse, a bicycle, or if I was trying to drive a carriage between these two byways?

This situation is completely and utterly unacceptable. BOAT 20 was added to the definitive map in June 2005 - that's nearly 14 years ago. RB 9 had already long been on the definitive map before that. The Highways Agency was made aware about the situation here at least a decade ago - but nothing has happened to address the situation.

There should, AT THE VERY LEAST, be a suitable gap in the central reservation barrier, sufficient to allow passage by public byway users, AND clear signage, including advance warning signage along the A 11 road, in either direction, to alert road users that this byway junction actually exists, and of the potential presence of users - including pedestrians, equestrians, cyclists and carriage drivers - at that junction.

Crossings, complete with warning signage, do exist along the A 11 road elsewhere near-by, including at grid refs TL 9823 8907 (Roudham RB 8) and TL 9342 8708 (Peddar's Way). There's also a gap in the central barrier at grid ref: TL 9284 8679 to facilitate access between the A 11 road and the High Bridgham Road.

There is absolutely no reason why a crossing cannot be provided here.

Message to Highways England: Why are you continuing to fail to take any action to address this situation?

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Updates

  • The following response was received from Highways England's "Asset Development Administrator Operations (East)" on 29th April 2019:

    "Thank you for your email, via the ‘FixMyStreet’ website, on 6 April to our Customer Contact Centre about a crossing on the A11 to connect the two byways near Roudham. Your query has been forwarded to me for reply as I’m a member of the Highways England team who manages the A11. "We can understand your enthusiasm to improve facilities for non-motorised users of byways in Norfolk. "The responsibility for the management of all Public Rights of Way (PROW) lies with Norfolk County Council (NCC). Any crossing improvements for PROW are therefore driven by NCC. I hope you understand that they, like us, have to prioritise the use of public money and this means that the more widely used routes are given higher priority. For more information on the plans NCC have for PROW please see the Norfolk Access Improvement Plan page on their website. "The byways that you refer to have not been raised as a priority so we have no current plans to install a crossing. "In addition, while recognising that all PROW offer an important recreational resource, we would not want to encourage people to tackle obstacles such as the A11. As you’ve clearly discovered yourself, the proximity of pedestrians to traffic moving at 70mph is a hazardous situation. Therefore, including the fact that there is no suitable designated crossing at the A11 to join the two byways in Roudham, we recommend that no-one should try to cross at this point. "Thank you again for highlighting your concerns. I understand that my response may be disappointing, but hope I’ve explained why we currently have no plans to install a crossing between the two byways."

    My reaction: This is a situation of Highways England's making. Crossing the A11 road at this location was perfectly possible until the dual carriageway was installed in 2003, without any provision for a crossing. This was clearly carried out in complete disregard of the existence of these byways.

    Posted anonymously at 10:28, Sat 4 May 2019

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