A CURB on speeding motorists in two Saddleworth villages has moved a step closer after an appeal in last month’s Independent.
Greenfield and Grasscroft Residents’ Association (GGRA) launched a search for volunteers to take part in a traffic survey designed to introduce possible new road safety measures in the areas.
Since the story appeared in our September edition, the GGRA has received a number of approaches from locals wanting to become involved with the campaign.
Working in partnership with Greater Manchester Police, residents will be issued with speed guns and receive training to implement a Neighbourhood Speed Watch scheme.
All evidence gathered will be presented to Oldham Council’s Highways team to persuade them that traffic calming measures are needed on the village’s main routes including: Manchester Road, Chew Valley Road, Well-i-Hole and Oldham Road.
Saddleworth Parish Councillor Jamie Curley first brought the Speed Watch initiative to the GGRA’s attention at a monthly meeting at the Satellite Centre.
“I’m really pleased this will be an initiative run and ‘owned’ by the community,” said Cllr Curley.
“It will enable us to collect data that we can use campaigning for safer roads and better infrastructure and in support of the community’s opinions about development.”
The GGRA has previously highlighted concerns over traffic issues, particularly in Greenfield which sees large numbers of cars passing through the village, including those on the way to Dovestone Reservoir beauty spot and shoppers heading for Tesco on Chew Valley Road.
Oldham’s Unity Partnership’s Traffic and Network Management insist that due to low accident statistics, they are unable to introduce new regulations.
GGRA chairman, Dr Andrew Taylor, said: “Many residents of Greenfield and Grasscroft are of the opinion that traffic problems along Chew Valley Road are more hazardous than in most other areas.
“Vehicle speed along the relatively straight road is one key element.
“Experience in other communities has shown that very often many of the worst speeders are local residents, and – possibly no surprise – younger drivers are disproportionately represented here.
“Several wider, calmer roads across the Oldham Borough – roads with speed humps and with fewer primary school children crossing them – now have permanent 20mph limits, whilst Chew Valley Road is a nominal 30mph limit zone with the limit frequently exceeded.
“Road signs and possibly a ‘school run time’ 20mph zone might be possible but nothing – absolutely nothing – will happen without proof of need.
“One way to prove the need for this sort of expenditure on highways is to have a road traffic collision death, or a few serious injuries.
“But most of us can see these happening sometime and very definitely don’t want to see them actually happen.
“A community speed watch programme could provide the evidence of need to take some form of action.”
There are still a couple of places available for anyone wishing to take part in the Speed Watch scheme and they should email for more details as soon as possible to: firstname.lastname@example.org