New protections for walkers 'jumping out of way' on narrow bridge
A painted carriageway and bollards may be introduced on a narrow historic bridge where pedestrians are 'jumping out of the way' of traffic.
The solution was proposed by Oxfordshire County Council, who own the Grade II-listed bridge, but requires Listed Building Consent from West Oxfordshire District Council.
A heritage statement accompanying Burford Town Council's planning application says the bridge over the River Windrush on Lower High Street, "carries approximately 13,000 cars per day and up to 600 HGVs ranging from 2 axle gravel lorries to 6 axle 44 tonne articulated ones".
It states: "Pedestrians use a painted 1-metre wide pavement on to which vehicles, particularly HGVs, drive. The pavement is therefore shared with the vehicles.
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"Pushchairs, mobility scooters, walking frames are particularly in danger."
It says Fulbrook residents with young children at Burford Primary School "use the bridge in the morning for their walk to school at the same time as the bulk of the lorry traffic".
"The objective is to make the bridge safer for pedestrians, reduce the risk of being crushed but without detracting from the historical integrity of the bridge and its setting in the AONB.
"It is an important entry to Burford. The vehicles and pedestrians would be separated by bollards over the length of the bridge."
Local resident Kenneth Gray writes in support of the application: "Excellent proposal.
"Do not want to share pavement with road traffic. Nowhere else on West Oxfordshire do I have to do this. This will do nothing to the bridge structure.
"I had to jump for my life when HGV came on to painted pavement where I was walking."
The statement also says there is historical evidence that the carriageway of the bridge has been built up many times.
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It is also tarmac and resurfaced periodically by Oxfordshire County Council.
"Consequently, the proposal is to delineate the carriageway and pedestrian way with reboundable bollards set into the carriageway.
"The historical structure of the bridge will not be altered or used in anyway.
"WODC is requested to approve these plans and to grant Listed Building Consent for this very important safety project."
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This story was written by Miranda Norris, she joined the team in 2021 and covers news across Oxfordshire as well as news from Witney.
Get in touch with her by emailing: Miranda.Norris@newsquest.co.uk. Or find her on Twitter: @Mirandajnorris
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