Late dad’s gran backs new safety measures

Runshaw Lane, Euxton on Good Friday following a car crash on Thursday night where two people were killed.
Runshaw Lane, Euxton on Good Friday following a car crash on Thursday night where two people were killed.

The grandmother of a young dad killed in a car crash has welcomed plans to slash a speed limit amid road safety concerns.

Lancashire County Council is proposing to reduce the speed limit on several roads, including Runshaw Lane in Euxton.

The national speed limit on Runshaw Lane would be reduced to 40mph, with a new 30mph speed limit from near Glencroft to near the junction with Primrose Hill Road.

Last month newly-engaged couple Alex Wilson, 23, and Kirsty Belsham, 22, died after a car crash on Runshaw Lane, leaving two young children.

Alex’s grandmother Elspbeth Wilson does not believe Kirsty was speeding and said she had a black box in the car for insurance purposes.

But she supported the plans to reduce the speed limit on Runshaw Lane.

Elspbeth, of Bispham Avenue, Farington Moss, said: “I think anything that makes it safer for drivers has got to be a good thing. I have been up that road myself and I know what people are like.”

“A speeding driver was jailed in December after colliding with 35-year-old cyclist Daniel Richmond on Runshaw Lane in April 2014, causing fatal injuries.

People living on Runshaw Lane have been campaigning for years for a lower speed limit and road safety measures. In 2014 they told the Guardian there had been numerous accidents and they feared for the safety of pedestrians, because there was no footpath. Carol Howarth, who lives on Runshaw Lane and is co-ordinator of the Neighbourhood Watch, said: “We are very pleased that they are reducing the speed limit.

“We are hoping that it will make a difference to the number of accidents we are getting on the road.”

She said residents hoped there would be additional road safety measures, such as chevrons on the bend.

County Coun Mark Perks, whose Chorley North division includes Runshaw Lane, said the reduced speed limit was “long overdue”.

He said: “We can’t physically stop motorists who want to break the speed limit, but reducing the speed limit should make people think that speeding can lead to deaths.”

Concerns about Runshaw Lane were raised on social media following the crash involving Kirsty and Alex.

On Facebook, Gypsy Angel said: “RIP...... This road has took a few lives over the years. Needs speed humps or speed limit reducing... My heart goes out to the families x”

Mandy Skidmore said: “So sad. Dangerous stretch of road”

Melissa Smith said: “Such a bad stretch of road seen so many cars in that ditch i cant even count, it’s awful!”

Leeanne Cayton said: “Awful that corner is slippy I went in the ditch years ago - the road needs sorting out”

New speed limits of 40mph are also being considered for Myles Standish Way in Chorley, Town Lane in Whittle-le-Woods, Wigan Lane in Coppull, and Runshaw Hall Lane, Euxton.

Ridwan Musa, highways manager for Lancashire County Council, said: “We’re proposing to reduce speed limits on a number of roads in Chorley following discussions between our engineers and police about road safety concerns.

“We held a formal consultation on these proposals at the end of last year and will present a report to the cabinet member for highways and transport for a final decision in May.”