Hundreds sign petition to get safe crossing at ‘dangerous’ Edinburgh road for school children

A worried mother has demanded Edinburgh City Council install a pedestrian crossing on a busy road after multiple near misses cause safety fears.

Thursday, 9th September 2021, 4:55 am
Updated Thursday, 9th September 2021, 7:26 am

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Orchard Road is used by dozens of school children each day as a main route to and from Flora Stevenson Primary School, Broughton High, Erskine Stewart's Melville and St George’s.

The route, which joins Queensferry Road to Craigleith Road also provides access to the Western General Hospital, and has no pedestrian crossing.

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More than 400 people have signed a petition to get a pedestrian crossing installed.

Mum-of-two Beth Thomson described it as an “accident waiting to happen” and has demanded the council take action to protect school children and locals.

The concerned 41-year-old launched a petition aiming to force the council to install a pedestrian crossing. The petition has gained 413 signatures in under a week.

“It is completely terrifying crossing the road alone, let alone with two young children,” said Ms Thomson who uses the junction twice a day to ferry her seven and eight-year-old to school.

“It is surrounded by lots of local amenities like Waitrose and Sainsbury’s as well as four schools and a hospital. It’s incredibly busy.”

Orchard Road junction labelled a 'death trap' by worried parent. .

Craigleith Road closure will intensify issues

Problems were exacerbated in July when nearby Craigleith Road was closed for six weeks to allow urgent sewage repairs to be carried out by Scottish Water.

Ms Thomson said this road closure caused “absolute havoc”.

The Blinkbonny Road resident witnessed several near misses which she said were “inevitable”.

“Two weeks ago an ambulance was called to the junction and I have seen several near misses,” she said.

It has now been confirmed that Craigleith Road will close again, this time for one year from mid-September to allow Scottish Water to install a new sewage system.

Terrified about the impact this will have Ms Thomson said the council must install a pedestrian crossing before the road is closed.

“It was absolute carnage when Craigleith Road was closed for a few weeks. The road being closed for a whole year is a terrifying prospect. It's only a matter of time before something serious happens."

Council say they are listening to residents’ concerns

A spokesperson from the council said they are working closely with Scottish Water to make sure disruption to locals is minimal.

The spokesperson said: “We are listening to residents’ concerns around road safety and have already agreed to a request to carry out an assessment to ascertain whether measures are required here. We must direct limited resources to where they are most needed, so follow a priority system and agreed criteria to carefully evaluate locations for the most appropriate response.

“During the last year and a half we have introduced temporary measures to help people walking and cycling in this area, and we’ll be retaining these longer term as part of the Travelling Safely programme. We’re also working closely with Scottish Water for the duration of essential work on Craigleith Road and as part of this have installed a series of speed humps in Orchard Road prior to this commencing to address non-compliance of the 20mph speed limit there and encourage use of the agreed diversion route along Orchard Brae.”

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