Mel Stride

    CENTRAL DEVON MP Mel Stride visited Morchard Bishop this afternoon (24/08/17) to meet with local resident Denise McSheehy regarding traffic speeds in Fore Street. They were joined by Neighbourhood Highways Officer Stephen Tucker and Highway Engineer Steve Short. Outlining the problem Denise explained that there is no pedestrian footway along Fore Street or Polson Hill, leaving schoolchildren who get off the bus by the War Memorial needing to walk on the road to reach homes in Bishops Meadow and Greenaway.

    Morchard Bishop Parish Council and Mid Devon District Councillor Judi Binks have previously taken up the issue but but speed checks that were carried out did not meet the criteria for restriction measures. Despite the Parish Council taking matters into their own hands and purchasing “Twenty’s Plenty” signs and affixing them in key places Cllr Binks says that more needs to be done:

    “The signs have definitely had some beneficial effect in causing motorists to momentarily check their speed when travelling along Fore Street and Polson Hill, but it's clear that neither of these roads is wide enough to allow two vehicles to pass easily and leave pedestrians, dog walkers and horse riders with scant protection.”

    Denise added:

    “Mel's visit to Morchard was very helpful in that it galvanised local residents to take further action. Now that Mel has experienced how dangerous and inappropriate a 30mph limit is, we hope he will support our efforts to pressurise DCC into making Morchard and other Devon villages into 20mph zones. 20mph zones have been established in Exeter and we see no reason why they cannot be put in place in Morchard Bishop. We are very grateful for Mel's support.”

    After listening to their arguments Mr Stride committed to looking into whether it might be possible longer term to have the law changed to allow local communities greater control of speed limits perhaps via their local plan. Devon Highways also agreed to conduct a detailed survey of speeds along the road.