Letters to the Mercury - 24 February 2012

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Crack down on drivers

The behaviour of drivers in Stamford is now becoming a serious road safety issue.

For many a year, there has been insufficient parking to accommodate the resident and transient town population. The addition of the car park adjacent to Wharf Road has, in fact, done little to alleviate the issue.

There appears to be a penchant in the town of parking wherever suits the individual and rather than using authorised car parks (the charges are reasonable), parking on streets, bends and clearly marked prohibited areas is rife.

Of particular note is High Street St Martins. This is a congestion point for traffic entering the town, made worse by inconsiderate motorists.

There is a clearly marked bus stop to the left as one travels down the hill and invariably, there is a vehicle parked in the bus stop bay.

This practice is, I believe an offence, as is parking on the double yellow lines. Imagine my frustration, when queuing in traffic to see a police community support officer walk past illegally parked vehicles, taking no action.

Granted, residents have a need to park, but the passing trade is now using this area as a car park. Where is the enforcement of the law?

Saturdays are exacerbated by patrons to the public houses. Why park on the bend or the street? It’s dangerous to do so and there is a car park available.

There is also a culture in Stamford of completely ignoring compliance with road traffic signs, which has caused me and others to have several near misses, with drivers oblivious to stop signs at junctions.

The practice of failing to stop, with the assumption that if a horn is sounded, accompanied by frantic waving of the hands as one reaches the junction, someone will allow the vehicle to join the main stream of traffic and the stop sign can be ignored.

This manoeuvre is effectively dangerous driving and is not contained in the Highway Code, nor is it recognised within the Road Traffic Act.

It is simply aggressive driving and is an offence. The same applies to driving the wrong way on a one way street.

Similarly, roundabouts are approached with complete oblivion to lane discipline and the use of indicators is obviously unknown to local drivers.

Stand near the Morrisons roundabout and see for yourself. The standard of driving is abysmal. Only today, I was confronted with a driver in the right hand lane, indicating right, who actually turned left across my path! Unbelieveable!

Enforcement and police patrols are the answer, not solely on a Saturday night either. This would serve as an effective deterrent to drivers who, through inconsideration for other road users, sheer arrogance or blind ignorance, commit offences and put other road users at risk.

Stamford is now a dangerous place to drive. I witness plenty of minor incidents. How long will it be before someone is killed or seriously injured? Traffic offences have consequences in law. It’s time they were enforced.

Adrian clarke

Exeter Road, Wittering

Signal box memories

I was pleased to see that a deal could be reached to save the run-down signal box at Stamford Station.

This particular box holds fond childhood memories for me of many an afternoon spent with my mum in the company of my grandad Hebert Hudson who was signal man there during the late 1950s and early1960s.

We would walk through the timber yard that is now the housing estate. I can remember the large horses tethered in the yard on our way to the box.

It would be such a shame for it to be allowed to get further run down or even demolished!

I look forward to seeing it returned to its former glory.

Lindsay Hudson

St John’s Close, Baston

Starved of council funds

In his letter (Mercury, February 10) Jeremy Ball highlights how Stamford children are suffering following the failure of Lincolnshire County Council to make alternative provision for sixthform education in Stamford when they voted, five years ago, to phase out the scholarship scheme.

This enabled 50 pupils each year to attend the endowed schools from the age of 11. Unfortunately this is just one of the many examples whereby both the county and district councils seem to be intent on penalising not only Stamford’s children but the town itself.

South Kesteven District Council’s recent Draft Infrastructure Delivery Plan shows where money is to be allocated across the district to support various services up to 2026.

From the table entitled Children and Childcare, we see that £19m is to be allocated across the district, of which £13m is to Grantham (surprise surprise) but nothing for Stamford.

Summarising the financial aspects of the 225-page document, it emerges that the total allocation for all services across the district is nearly £90m of which Stamford’s allocation is just £5m. Relating these figure to populations, Grantham has an allocation of about £1,300 per head; Bourne £1,000; The Deepings £500 and Stamford a paltry £240 per head.

There can be no doubt in my mind that both the county and district councils are intent on driving Stamford into extinction by systematically starving it of funding thereby reducing facilities and services.

This can only result in forcing intending and present residents to seek better value elsewhere for their council tax and other charges which are already the highest in South Kesteven.

Of the eight major roads in and out of Stamford, only one goes to Lincolnshire; it is high time this was “disconnected” from Lincolnshire to stop the outflow of our money for the benefit of elsewhere in the county.

John Fox

Cottesmore Road, Stamford

Grateful for your support

ON behalf of the Labrador Rescue Trust a dog charity that rehomes many dogs every year we would like to thank the numerous Morrisons store customers who donated a magnificent £505 over the two days of collecting in the store.

We also had many inquiries from people who are interested in rehoming or fostering a dog.

If any person reading this is interested in rehoming, fostering or helping us with fundraising please contact our area co-ordinator Shirley Smith on 01780 450820.

DEREK HARRISON

fundraiser, The Labrador Rescue Trust, Bulwick