ePetition details

Child friendly village

We the undersigned petition the Council to make Hutton Henry village a safe place for school children and residents. We would like improvements made to this village by installing a zebra crossing, parking spaces around school and a 20mph zone.

Hutton Henry is a major access route to the A19 and can see a lot of traffic pass through it. There is no safe space for children to cross the road to the nearby park, or for residents to access the church hall. Equally, at school closing time there is no suitable spaces for families to collect their children from school due to inadequate parking.

This ePetition ran from 18/03/2024 to 03/06/2024 and has now finished.

44 people signed this ePetition.

Council response

Requests for formalised crossing such as a zebra crossing or traffic signal-controlled crossing are assessed against a national criteria devised by the Department for Transport (DfT), which takes into account various factors including traffic flow and the number of pedestrians crossing the road throughout the day and not just the busiest period. It has been proven that low pedestrian flows at formalised crossings results in more road traffic accidents whereby the motorist has failed to stop, therefore the reason for the DfT guidance.

Additionally, the County Council receives more requests for formalised crossing facilities than it is able to fund from limited road safety budgets and as such we are required to direct available funding towards addressing locations with the worst accident records. Having checked the accident recording database shared with Durham Constabulary, I can confirm no recorded ‘personal injury’ accidents in Hutton Henry during the past 5 years, being our standard search criteria. These figures represent a favourable accident record compared to many other locations within the County, where future intervention by the Council would be beneficial to improve road safety.

In the case of Hutton Henry, the national criteria for a formal crossing could not be satisfied, this is basically because there is no overall “desire line” on what is a long section of road where pedestrians choose to cross where it is convenient for them, rather than at a specific location. In addition, and importantly, the pedestrian and vehicular flows are significantly too low to achieve the necessary threshold criteria to justify a crossing.

The creation of additional off-road parking through Hutton Henry has been assessed and there are no areas of suitable land within the ownership of Durham County Council where additional parking could be created, with a great deal of the open verge areas being designated as village green. Even if the land issue could be resolved there is no central budget available so any progression would rely wholly on third party funding, such as the County Councillors AAP/Neighbourhood budget and/or the local Parish Council. Unfortunately, due to the reasons stated there is no scope at this time to progress this element of your request.

The road through Hutton Henry would not meet the criteria for a 20mph speed limit. However, we would be open to the introduction of an advisory 20mph speed limit for the school area should 3rd party funding, as mentioned previously, be made available.