Bid to stop Corby motorists using George Street

George Street in Corby

George Street in Corby

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More than 270 drivers an hour are exploiting a legal loophole to get around traffic rules in a town centre street in Corby.

Only taxis and buses are supposed to use George Street, while cars, bikes and vans are only allowed to use the main thoroughfare for access.

The restrictions in George Street

The restrictions in George Street

But in just one hour in the middle of an afternoon, our reporter counted 243 cars, 21 vans and 12 motorbikes using the no-through road.

Although signs at each end of the road are clear, police find it difficult to prosecute drivers because the ‘access’ loophole means vehicles who need to get to Everest Lane or to the access road behind Primark can use George Street.

Now a meeting could be held to try to bring an end to the problems.

Cllr Jean Addison said: “It’s just an accident waiting to happen.

George Street in Corby

George Street in Corby

“My big fear is that a child going across the road to the pool is knocked over.

“It’s not just cars using the road, it’s motorbikes and lorries.

“We have been pressing the county council to improve things but unfortunately we haven’t really had a satisfactory response from them.”

The crossing on the road was originally supposed to be a shared space when the George Street improvements were made back in 2011.

But it quickly became obvious that it was too confusing for pedestrians and motorists so an official zebra crossing was installed there.

There are two taxi ranks and several bus stops on the road which, added to the zebra crossing, mean that it is not appropriate for the volume of traffic currently using it.

Pedestrian Debra Simmonds, of Blake Road, Corby, said: “I’ve got two toddlers and it is often really dangerous using the crossing.

“There is so much going on that you can’t often see the cars coming and they sometimes don’t stop for the zebra crossing.

“I’d like to see the traffic rules enforced a lot more rigorously.”

Corby Hackney Carriage Owners’ Association Secretary Shay O’Connor said: “A motorbike collided with a taxi a few weeks ago and we’ve had problems with vehicles actually coming into the taxi rank then getting angry with us because they’ve got to queue up with the taxis to get out again.

“It’s a ridiculous situation.

“There are signs by La Fonte and at the other end of the street but because there is access allowed, the police are struggling to prosecute anyone.”

Cllr Addison is hoping to hear from people who have encountered problems on the road, and is hoping she can sit down with taxi owners, the tenants and residents’ association, the police and the county council to find a workable solution to the issues.

Anyone who wants to be involved can email Cllr Addison.