Wiltshire Publications

Gaps finally added to fishing lake barrier

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CONSTRUCTION workers have started to add gaps to the vehicle restraint barrier at Eden Vale lake by the railway station, to allow disabled access to the lake following months of delay. 

The vehicle restraint barrier is a highways safety requirement from Wiltshire Council’s highways team as the unitary authority is set to adopt the road from the developer, Linden Homes.  

Linden Homes originally said they would liaise with the angling club who had raised concerns back in March that the continuous one-metre-wide barrier would not allow disabled people to access the lake, despite disabled fishing pontoons being installed in recent years.  

Linden Homes have apologised for the delay and any disruption it has caused, and they have said that they will also be creating a crossing point on the road adjacent to the lake, to make the area safer for pedestrians trying to cross the road to access the lake. 

A spokesperson from Linden Homes said, “Work to the vehicle restraint barrier is currently under way; a gap has been created, a footway is being installed and a crossing point on the main road will then follow. Unfortunately, it has taken longer due to the nature of the design and the necessary agreements – as it will be handed over to the local authority when the road is adopted – but it will be completed this summer. 

“We would like to apologise again for any disruption while these essential works take place however, in this instance, highway safety has to take priority.” 

Cllr Matt Dean, the councillor who originally raised the disabled access issue with Wiltshire Council said, “The work hasn’t been finished completely as of yet, but the gaps are finally there, which is great news! The fence itself was a safety requirement by Wiltshire Council who are due to adopt the road and adding the gaps was a compromise that suited those who wanted access to the disabled fishing pontoons without making the fence pointless in terms of road safety.  

“The gaps perhaps aren’t in the place where everyone would have chosen, but it’s a compromise, and I’m happy the developer has paid for it and done the work.” 

When reporting on the lack of access to the fishing lake months ago, White Horse News spoke to Kate Scarlett of Westbury, who is partly disabled. Kate spoke of her love of visiting the lake and whilst waiting for the access work to be completed, she has been travelling to other lakes in the area. 

Kate said, “Unfortunately, with the rising costs of fuel I simply couldn’t afford to keep visiting different lakes and so I’ve been feeling a bit lost in the meantime. The lack of movement on installing these gaps has had a huge impact on my mental health because I used to love just taking in the nature and the serenity; it helped clear my head and put things into perspective and I struggle to get that elsewhere. This has caused me a lot of stress.”

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