At last, danger bush gets the chop!
- Credit: Sarah Burgess
A perilously-placed hedge blocking pedestrian visibility at a busy city junction — dubbed as Norwich's 'most dangerous' bush — has finally got the chop.
As part of the Grapes Hill roundabout roadworks, the temporary loss of traffic lights at the crossing between Chapel Field North and Cleveland Road created chaos for walkers unable to see approaching cars.
With no crossing and, for the meantime, no traffic lights to go off, pedestrians had to edge out in front of the hedges lining Chapelfield Gardens — and risk having to quickly retreat to the pavement if a car was flying towards them on the 30mph street.
On September 23, after pressure from the Evening News, Norwich City Council confirmed it had cut back the hedge and increased visibility.
But it's not the end of the problem, locals maintain.
Daniel Connor, a 26-year-old living in the area, said: "I'm glad something has been done, but you only get an extra second or so.
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"Really, we need a pedestrian crossing. It's the only way to make it truly safe."
Previously, another local had called the bush a "death-trap", saying it was only a matter of time before there was a collision between pedestrian and vehicle.
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Green councillor Lucy Galvin thanked the Evening News for keeping pressure on the councils to take action.
She explained: "Unfortunately, pedestrians are often just forgotten about.
"They're constantly at the bottom of the priority list when it comes to roadworks and traffic access schemes.
"Wherever there is a traffic light, there should be a pedestrian phase that allows people to pass safely on foot.
"It's sad that the hedges have needed to be cut to make the situation any better, because they're needed for public amenity. It shouldn't have to come to this."
Ward councillor Jamie Osborn agreed with his colleague.
He said: "It's always important that safety concerns are looked in to, and that maintenance of hedges is carried out to make roads visible for people."
A county council spokesman said after the roadworks were complete, the traffic lights would return at this junction.
He added that the council would consider further steps as necessary to ensure pedestrian safety.