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Holmes Chapel Parish Council not allowed to fund a SID post for busy road

For over 3 years Holmes Chapel Parish Council has been working to get a post installed on Manor Lane to place a Speed Indicator Device (SID).

Manor Lane is a busy road at the east side of the village. It is a 30mph road with new housing estates at either end and with retail, two business parks and housing located along it. Residents have frequently raised concerns about speeding along this road and fear for the safety of themselves and their children, for whom it is a key route for walking to school.

The Parish Council decided that it would use its own funds to provide a post upon which to position one of our SID devices. Cheshire East Highways have resisted this proposal until recently, when a local Cheshire East Highways Officer supported us, and we believed the project was moving forward. We obtained some quotations and even agreed a suitable location for the post with this Officer.

Yet, Cheshire East Highways have now put a stop to our plans and will not authorise this installation even though our SIDs meet the standard Department for Transport criteria. We received correspondence from a Senior Road Safety Technician to say:

“Unfortunately we are not authorising this installation as we have already stated that there will no longer be any pole installations for SID solar/battery powered use regardless of the finance of them. Your Highways Officer was incorrect to say that a post could be erected for the SID use as we do not want any more permanent posts going in for this use.”

The Technician continued with “The road could be reassessed if it appears that vehicles are speeding and that the current speed limit might be inappropriate but this could mean that the limit is raised higher than what it is at present.” Residents are already concerned with vehicle speed where the limit is 30mph, so why would Cheshire East Highways even consider increasing it?

Cheshire East Council is not listening to its residents. Cheshire East Highways confirmed in 2019 that they did not have an approved policy on this issue, and we believe this remains the case. The Parish Council simply cannot understand why Cheshire East Highways will not allow the Parish Council to fund a post upon which we can place a SID.

Ward Councillor Les Gilbert says “I fully support the Parish Council and local residents in their campaign for a SID post on Manor Lane. Once again Cheshire East Highways appear to have adopted a policy which has not been approved by elected Members and which does not appear to prioritise highway safety”.

The Parish Council is appalled at the responses from Cheshire East Highways and calls upon the Council to resolve this matter and give permission for us to install this much needed SID post.

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