“Somebody will be killed” warning over heavy lorries

ON THE ROAD -- Chesterfield Road campaigners, (from left), Coun Lee Anderson, Trevor Sowter, Coun Glenys Maxwell and Colin Renshaw.
ON THE ROAD -- Chesterfield Road campaigners, (from left), Coun Lee Anderson, Trevor Sowter, Coun Glenys Maxwell and Colin Renshaw.

Angry residents have warned that “somebody is going to get killed” because of lorries rumbling illegally through Huthwaite.

A 20-year campaign for HGV weight restrictions on Chesterfield Road was finally won in 2014 when a limit of 7.5-tonnes was imposed by Notts County Council.

However, residents and councillors say many lorries, including some owned by local companies, are openly flouting the new regulations.

“Now it is time something was done,” said campaigner Colin Renshaw (72), who has lived on Chesterfield Road area all his life.

“I have never known it as bad for heavy vehicles up here as it is now,” said Mr Renshaw, who is fighting for action alongside fellow villagers Trevor Sowter (80) and Wendy Oakley.

“There are a lot of pensioners living here, and it is dangerous for children who walk along the road to an and from school.

“Somebody is going to get killed, or badly hurt.”

The residents’ battle has been supported by Ashfield’s Labour MP, Gloria De Piero, and newly-elected Ashfield councillor for Huthwaite and Brierley, Coun Lee Anderson (Lab).

“The problem is that the road is a massive, tempting short-cut from junction 28 of the M1 through to the Tibshelf area,” said Coun Anderson. But that is not the point. The lorries should not be doing it. They are flouting the rules.

“This is an old, crumbly road with narrow pavements. In fact, it is a country lane really. It is not fit for lorries, with kids going to school and pensioners walking to and from the shops.

“We are concerned about the noise, the speed, and the damage being done to the road. We have reported the matter to trading standards at Nottinghamshire County Council who have written to the offending companies.

“I have been doing my own ‘lorry-watch’, taking pictures and forwarding them on to trading standards.

“But it is getting to the stage where action is needed. Cameras might have to be installed.”

Mr Renshaw revealed that some lorries fly along Chesterfield Road so fast, it’s impossible to take their registration numbers.

“One went by the other morning as early as 5.45,” he said.

“Last year, a lamp-post was knocked down five times. There are lots of signs showing the weight restrictions. There are no excuses for not seeing them.”

Coun Glynn Gilfoyle, chairman of the county council’s community safety committee, said: “We are keen to involve the local community by helping them to set up and run a lorry-watch scheme where they can report any breaches. Similar schemes are in place in other areas of the county and are very effective.”