VILLAGERS living along the A36 are demanding road safety improvements, after a spate of accidents including one which killed a pregnant teacher have led to traffic being diverted down unsuitable narrow country lanes.

Following the inquest into the death of Anna Kirsopp-Lewis, 34, who was killed along with her unborn child in an accident on the same road, locals have voiced concerns to parish councils about heavy volumes of traffic being diverted through their villages from the main trunk road between Bath and Salisbury.

They say accidents like those on the A36 are leading to heavy good vehicles, buses, coaches and cars being diverted down unsuitable narrow country lanes.

Heather Parks, clerk of Heytesbury, Imber and Knook Parish Council, said: “It is an ongoing issue and I think it’s going to continue.

“A spate of accidents recently caused traffic to be diverted through the village and the Parish Council’s local signage was deployed, but the police still diverted unsuitable traffic through.

“We have raised it with the Wiltshire Community Area Transport Group and have put our own signs out on the verges to say the narrow lanes are unsuitable for heavy vehicles but we have no powers to do anything on the highway.”

In June, traffic was diverted after a crash at the junction of the A36 with the B390 Chitterne Road at Knook led to a motorcyclist being seriously injured after a collision with a car.

He was airlifted to Southmead Hospital in Bristol in a critical condition. Police said last week “He continues to make progress.”

The woman driver of a VW Polo involved in the accident has been summoned to appear at Salisbury Magistrates Court on November 8 charged with driving without due care and attention.

But parish councillors at Heytesbury, Knook and Codford are concerned at the number of accidents on the A36 and also the problems at junctions.

Mrs Parks said: “Some work has taken place after referral to the CATG, but members were not sure what could be done to improve the situation.

“It was thought that traffic lights would help, but after the temporary lights were installed whilst utility work was undertaken recently, it caused chaos.

“Members felt that they would like somebody to talk to them about the suggestions and what might be achievable.”

Members believe Highways England has carried out a safety study but the parish councillors have not seen any results from this.

They added: “With the usage of Knook Camp busy for most of the year, it was also felt that the army should be involved. The movement of their vehicles was an additional factor in the movement of traffic generally.”

Cllr Elizabeth Colvin wants to raise the issue again with CATG to see what could be achieved. She wants to see whether the group could help to reduce the speed limit in the area of Knook Camp.

A Highways England spokesman said further safety improvement schemes being considered for the A36 include a reduction of speed limit from 50mph to 40mph at Landford, re-lining of three-lane single carriageway sections with a continuous double white line at Cley Hill and Crockerton roundabouts, improvements of westbound taper from dual to single carriageway at Wylye interchange and improvement of diverge and junction visibility at Codford A36 Junction.