Trial could signal the end of the line for road’s bollards

The bollards in Yew Tree Drive
The bollards in Yew Tree Drive
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A THREE-month trial lowering of controversial bus bollards has been given the final seal of approval from the county council.

The Yew Tree Drive automatic bus bollards, in Whiteley, caused outrage in February when they held up an ambulance racing to the aid of a sick three-year-old boy.

Since then, the bollards have been lowered due to bridge replacement roadworks on the M27.

The county council has now signed off a three-month trial opening, which if successful, could signal the removal of the bollards.

The trial will take place from January, when the motorway roadworks finish.

Executive member for transport at Hampshire County Council Cllr Sean Woodward approved the trial at a meeting this week.

Cllr Woodward said: ‘This item does have a tremendous history to it.

‘We do now have a very good raft of mitigation measures planned, so I am happy with all the recommendations.’

Fareham Borough Council insisted that a host of measures was put in by January before it gave its approval to the trial last month.

These measures include flashing speed limit signs and speed bumps to prevent motorists speeding down the road, which is home to a primary school.

One of these measures is a new toucan crossing, to operate with lights, outside the school.

This upset parents as they faced losing their long-standing lollipop lady from the spot and a campaign was started to save her.

Cllr Woodward wanted to reassure parents the lollipop lady would still be used, but moved down the road to the junction of Rookery Avenue.

He said that meant the school would have an extra safe crossing point.

He also said that he would be looking at putting in another crossing point at Sweethills Crescent junction with another lollipop person.

Cllr Woodward added the work would also benefit Swanwick Lane, Swanwick and Botley Road, Burridge, as the council would be spending part of the £285,000 set aside for the mitigation measures on those roads too.

He said: ‘We will be monitoring the traffic speed, size and distance, across all three roads so that next summer I can make an informed decision on whether to make the trial permanent.’