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Felixstowe: New signs set to make shared space safer

18:00 04 October 2012


Felixstowe's Hamilton Road shared space - the entrance signs are to be changed to make the nature of the street clearer to drivers.


NEW signs are to be put in place at the entrance to Felixstowe’s controversial shared space shopping scheme to try to make the area safer.

What they are saying on Streetlife . . .

■ Marc T: “I have no idea whether I can park there or not – not that I drive there anyway – so I assume everyone else is in the dark too. It seems that shared space means you won’t know what the rules are until you break them.”

■ Tom C: “I find it much more relaxing and easier to walk through the town now, rather than the narrow pavements we used to have when we used to get bowled over by speeding invalid trollies!”

■ Felix: “The idea was good, just not thought through. Cars and people don’t mix well. Ban all cars from the high street and reintroduce proper crossings at either end.”

■ Cara B: “Change is good, but ask a small child where a path is and where a road is and they will know, but in the shared space they won’t, and that is just plain dangerous!”

■ James S: “Children and hard of hearing pedestrians are very much at risk in our Hamilton Road shared space. I have witnessed many near misses and confrontations in this area.”

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There have been persistent complaints from pedestrians that they do not feel safe in Hamilton Road between Boots and Bank Corner, that many vehicles travel faster than 20mph and drivers do not understand that they can only park if they are disabled.

Councillors believe poor signing is one of the reasons for the fears and confusion about the £2.8 million award-winning project.

Signs at the entrance do not specify 20mph – these are on the approach road – and say instead “Restricted zone: no loading”.

Now the signs are to be changed to say “Entering Shared Space” to draw drivers’ attention to the probability that pedestrians will be using the road to walk.

County councillor Graham Newman, of the Felixstowe highways advisory committee, said the signs would have a yellow background with black lettering as this was felt to be the most eye-catching.

“The aim is to address some of the issues which have arisen, some of them as far back as a year ago, particularly at the Hamilton Road-Cobbold Road junction,” he said.

“We are also putting other signs in place and bringing back into use a post for an extra sign outside Carphone Warehouse, which would be very noticeable to vehicles turning from the cinema direction into the shared space.

“We hope it will be much clearer to people that they are entering a different type of road and should be moving more slowly and carefully and the situation should be safer.”


  • i am disabled and my husband is my driver,without his help i can only on very rare occasions if at all get out to the shops.everytime we drive down hamilton road from boots to bankers corner its as if some paedestrians do not realise that cars come down one way.most of them do not even look from left to right.we have also had people on push bikes zooming towards us from the wrong direction.nine times out of ten when we try to find a parking space it is either filled up with motorists not displaying blue badges or even delivery vans and lorries taking up the little enough spaces there if you ask me it is going to take more than a few new signs to sort things out.

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    Saturday, October 6, 2012

  • Poor signing - drivers are too busy trying to negotiate pedestrians to pay attention to reading a sign. Isn't it obvious you're entering a different type of road as it isn't tarmac and pavments and kerbs? Sorry, but I think 20mph is way too fast when you are in close proximity to pedestrians who are wandering around shopping. Walking pace for cars should be more appropriate. Proper LAW enforcement of the signage and speed is needed. I have seen many people drive down Hamilton road in a fast and threatening way. The simple fact is that it's dangerous to pedestrians, but the council will not ever admit that and putting a sign up will cover them for anything that happens as they can say....'the signs were there'

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    Friday, October 5, 2012

  • It's all very well saying these so-called "signs" will have "a yellow background with black lettering as this [is] felt to be the most eye-catching" but that makes it sound like a schoolboy describing something he made with fuzzy felt and sticky-backed plastic for a GCSE project. There are quite clear guidelines and regulations on signage set out in The Traffic Signs and Regulations Manual, so the council won't have to worry about what someone "feels to be most eyecatching" when replacing poor signage with something fit for purpose.

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    bigger niche

    Thursday, October 4, 2012

  • As a motorist and pedestrian one of the problems is that walking from Boots to Bank corner pedestrians forget that vehicles are coming down the road and saunter in the middle of the road, apparently obivious of anything behind them. I am as guilty as other people.

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    Friday, October 5, 2012

  • Does it not cross anyone else's mind that the moaning pedestrians may be the ones who need educating? I have even driven down Hamilton road at 5 miles an hour with my blue badge on my dash-board in plain sight only to find that pedestrians will not move out of the middle of the road until I give them no choice - Then I am shouted at. It would not be quite so bad if all of these complaining pedestrians were actually spending loads of money in the shops, but a couple of minutes chatting to any of the shopkeepers shows that they are not. So they say it is easier to walk up and down the road - Whooppee - But what's the point of completely free wandering if they are not spending any money?? At least when lots of people could park for a short time to shop the town was thriving! Now it is fast becoming a ghost town - The new shops last for 6 months, then when the cheap rent and rates period is over they close. Thank goodness Lidl opened, at least they have a big carpark!

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    Friday, October 5, 2012

  • That is not enough. There has to be a speed limit sign. With out that people will drive fast. Also perhaps it should only be Disabled People going into the area. To be honest if you are not Disabled why bother to drive down there because you cannot park there. To me it is a complete shambles.

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    biggles the pilot

    Friday, October 5, 2012

  • what exactly is the difrence between a shared space scheme to that of the regular cars coming down the road and pedestrains having to stay out of the way of cars? the only difrence i see is that there are no pavements or adefined outline for a road...for the sake of a few hundred yards..why cant this area be pedestrianised? what exactly is the problem with having people not hassled by cars..and being able to have a coffee outside on the seats without cars driving inches away from and and having to put up with the resulting fumes? why is everything done here always hafl hearted and never thought through? it would not kill trade...the whole thing is a mess and holiday makers are not goin to be fully aware of what is going on. this is not something we see a lot of anywhere else..there are ample car parking spaces...maybe it should only be a thru road for disabled drivers and parking..but no other vehicle should be allowed down that road...the way it stands i see it as no difrent to having a regular road with cars goin down it for all the good it is..people are still forced to get out of the way...and gives people a false sense of safety. it doesnt even look like a proper surface for cars to drive on anyway...can it withstand the constant traffic? no..i dont think that surface will last for that reason.why is there such a problem with pedestrianisation? why is it so difficult to implement? wouldmake so much sense just for that small bit of road to be so.that way people can walk and feel relaxed and enjoy a cuppa outside..and not fear for their kids safety or their pets..or themselves?its the 21st century...lets have a town area that reflects that please..not this half hearted and obvious compromise which will inevitably cause a lot of problems...hardly anyone likes it...and signs are a wate of time..people do not bother to look half the has to be more clear cut what is permissable and what isnt. people and cars do not mix...on paper it might but in reality it doesnt..the town has so much potential to being very attractive and quaint in its way..but this ruins creates tension between drivers and pedestrians...i know it..ive seen it all too often. people are not happy about it at all..shared space is most definatly not an asset to this town.

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    Friday, October 5, 2012

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

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