Call to reinstate bollards now amid fears of serious injury or further riverbank collapses in March

PUBLISHED: 16:11 21 August 2014

River bank collapse along Nene Parade in March in the early 1980s.

River bank collapse along Nene Parade in March in the early 1980s.

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Residents are calling for bollards removed from a March riverside road to be reinstated before someone is seriously hurt or the river bank collapses.

Nene parade bollard removed. Nene parade bollard removed.

The bollards in Nene Parade were removed the day after the floods earlier this month.

Concerned John Abbott, whose property stands midway through the part of Nene Parade that was closed to traffic in the mid 1980s after a major riverbank collapse, wants urgent action to reinstate the bollards.

He explained the portion of Nene Parade between numbers 30 to 62 is subject to a Statutory Road Closure Order, which means there is no vehicular access, other than for emergency vehicles.

Bollards were put up to prevent cars from driving along it, but they were removed during the weekend following the floods on August 8, the holes were filled in and tarmac laid.

Nene parade bollard removed. Nene parade bollard removed.

Since then vehicles have been driving along the narrow pathway and Mr Abbott is concerned for the safety of children and other residents walking along that part of Nene Parade, which is less than nine feet wide in places.

He also fears the steady traffic flow will spark a further bank collapse.

There was a major collapse during the recent floods and there has been a subsequent one since then.

In the early 1980s there was a severe bank collapse, which Mr Abbott, said led to the Statutory Road Closure Order being implemented.

Part of the riverbank collapsed. Picture: Steve Williams. Part of the riverbank collapsed. Picture: Steve Williams.

“I feel sorry for those businesses and people at the top end of Nene Parade, who have been affected by the recent road closure caused by the bank collapse because they have always had access. But there is no reason why people visiting properties in the section of the road covered by the statutory order should be driving down there as they all have rear accesses.

“People stepping out of their properties are in danger because of vehicles driving along here. We really don’t want any more river bank collapses. I genuinely fear someone is going to be seriously hurt or properties damaged if the bollards are not replaced quickly,” said Mr Abbott.

Town and district councillor Jan French is backing Mr Abbott.

“It is worrying but it is something for Cambridgeshire County Council as it is a highways matter, but they need to be replaced as quickly as possible,” she said.

A spokesman for Cambridgeshire County Council explained the bollards had been removed temporarily to allow the residents affected by the road closure sparked by the recent bank collapse at the top of Nene Parade to still have access to their properties.

He said the council would monitor the situation and make sure it does not cause further problems on the riverbank.

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