Residents demand restrictions on Caen Hill stretch

This Is Wiltshire: George and Muriel Walton are calling for a single carriageway alongside Caen Hill Road George and Muriel Walton are calling for a single carriageway alongside Caen Hill Road

Residents who live alongside Caen Hill in Devizes have demanded that it should be restricted to a single carriageway to cut speeds and increase road safety.

Muriel and George Walton, who have lived in the pretty cottage at the corner of Caen Hill and Marsh Lane, Rowde, for 16 years, have been putting up with increasing traffic noise and more frequent crashes.

In a letter to Wiltshire Council’s highways department over the countywide review of speed limits, Mrs Walton wrote: “On a summer’s evening motorbikes can be heard revving up at Seend Fork with the intention of opening their throttles as they reach our home and the dual carriageway.

“The noise is horrendous. Our spaniels howl along to it.

“I recall on one occasion when a van leaving Marsh Lane to cross the dual carriageway and turn right had a motorbike planted right inside it with only the back of the bike visible.”

There have been countless crashes along the stretch of dual carriageway, some of them fatal. Mr and Mrs Walton support the reduction of the speed limit on the road from the national 70mph to 50mph, but they suggest going a step further.

Mrs Walton told the Gazette: “We can’t see the point of the dual carriageway. Any traffic speeding up the hill is then bottle-necked into a single lane and a 30mph zone. This encourages further speeding in order to be at the top first.”

The Waltons suggest closing off one of the carriageways that could then be used by cyclists and pedestrians, particularly children, “who would then be safer than with the current road layout”.

Another local resident, Patrick Dawe-Lane, has circulated a letter to his neighbours and parish councils, which is being supported by Rowde Parish Council.

Mr Dawe-Lane wrote: “The volume of traffic using the dual carriageway has increased considerably since it was opened in the early 1980s and so has the average speed of vehicles using it.

“The volume of traffic using the junctions off the dual carriageway has also increased, meaning that the national speed limit of 70mph is no longer acceptable and should be lowered to reduce the risk of further serious accidents occurring.”

Comments (7)

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5:56pm Thu 20 Sep 12

markinmelksham says...

How about another brainwave idea which harks from Bath and Bristol......stick a bus lane on it in both directions.
How about another brainwave idea which harks from Bath and Bristol......stick a bus lane on it in both directions. markinmelksham

8:44am Fri 21 Sep 12

cris says...

ok... if you live by a dual carriageway you going to have to put up with noise..

what a stupid complaint

its a road accidents happen. compared with other roads near Devizes i have heard less about accidents on Caen hill.

if you don't like it MOVE do just try and make the rest of the world fit round your plans
ok... if you live by a dual carriageway you going to have to put up with noise.. what a stupid complaint its a road accidents happen. compared with other roads near Devizes i have heard less about accidents on Caen hill. if you don't like it MOVE do just try and make the rest of the world fit round your plans cris

4:49pm Fri 21 Sep 12

Scrunge says...

Funny how none of the other residents are complaining?
The people at The Olive Branch or the cottage ?
The Jones at the Scrapyard?
The people at the farm further up?

And they dont have the benefit of a big wide junction to enter or exit the duel carriageway?

Ridiculous.
Funny how none of the other residents are complaining? The people at The Olive Branch or the cottage ? The Jones at the Scrapyard? The people at the farm further up? And they dont have the benefit of a big wide junction to enter or exit the duel carriageway? Ridiculous. Scrunge

1:50pm Sun 23 Sep 12

T JENNINGS says...

You probably have not looked at the result of this stupid to say the least suggestion of a single lane a noise increase think about the tail backs caused by slow moving traffic when tractors coaches and other slow moving vehicles are going up the hill and no one is able to overtake the extra exhaust fumes and the delays to road users you obviously have only thought of yourselves and given no thought or consideration to anyone else can I suggest you find something else to moan about or as a previose contributer suggested move.
You probably have not looked at the result of this stupid to say the least suggestion of a single lane a noise increase think about the tail backs caused by slow moving traffic when tractors coaches and other slow moving vehicles are going up the hill and no one is able to overtake the extra exhaust fumes and the delays to road users you obviously have only thought of yourselves and given no thought or consideration to anyone else can I suggest you find something else to moan about or as a previose contributer suggested move. T JENNINGS

6:19pm Mon 24 Sep 12

blackstone says...

The dual carriageway was there 16 yrs ago---need I say more?
The dual carriageway was there 16 yrs ago---need I say more? blackstone

2:47pm Wed 26 Sep 12

Don Jones says...

Both the headline and the article should be prefaced by the same word - 'Two'.

I'm not alone in getting narked at the number of people who use Rotherstone as a cut-through. Perhaps I should write to the council and 'demand' action.
Both the headline and the article should be prefaced by the same word - 'Two'. I'm not alone in getting narked at the number of people who use Rotherstone as a cut-through. Perhaps I should write to the council and 'demand' action. Don Jones

10:07am Thu 27 Sep 12

Rowdey says...

I have some sympathy with the call to do something about this stretch of road. Crossing this road nearly every day between Rowde and PouIshot, I can't comment about the noise but the speeds some road users find appropriate are horrifying, particularly coming down from Devizes. Without having access to a speed camera, clearly I can't give definitive speeds but would estimate a number of drivers exceeding 90 mph past the Poulshot junction. A small minority perhaps but it only takes one to skewer you.
The temptation is obvious. You've been bottled up at 30 or less all through Devizes and then you come out at the top of a long straight gradient with a fast single carriage way opening out onto a dual carriage. The traffic tends to be less dense by here and gravity is on your side. You open up...
However, on the dual carriageway section there are three sign posted junctions with small roads, each with a gap in the central reservation plus a number of driveways, lanes etc. Clearly the speed limit is too high and the speeds of some individuals is far too high. I can't see anyone returning this to a single carriage way but speed limits need to be reduced and enforced. Despite an earlier contributors comments, there have been a number of shunts at the junctions. There have been fatalities and if things stay as they are then it is only a matter of time, (in my opinion) before there a further fatalites.
I have some sympathy with the call to do something about this stretch of road. Crossing this road nearly every day between Rowde and PouIshot, I can't comment about the noise but the speeds some road users find appropriate are horrifying, particularly coming down from Devizes. Without having access to a speed camera, clearly I can't give definitive speeds but would estimate a number of drivers exceeding 90 mph past the Poulshot junction. A small minority perhaps but it only takes one to skewer you. The temptation is obvious. You've been bottled up at 30 or less all through Devizes and then you come out at the top of a long straight gradient with a fast single carriage way opening out onto a dual carriage. The traffic tends to be less dense by here and gravity is on your side. You open up... However, on the dual carriageway section there are three sign posted junctions with small roads, each with a gap in the central reservation plus a number of driveways, lanes etc. Clearly the speed limit is too high and the speeds of some individuals is far too high. I can't see anyone returning this to a single carriage way but speed limits need to be reduced and enforced. Despite an earlier contributors comments, there have been a number of shunts at the junctions. There have been fatalities and if things stay as they are then it is only a matter of time, (in my opinion) before there a further fatalites. Rowdey

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