Contractors prepare to begin resurfacing Longbridge Lane | Image by Julie Hancock

Residents of Longbridge Lane in West Heath have expressed their relief that resurfacing work has now begun.

The stretch of road between Alvechurch Road and Groveley Lane has seen a number of accidents in recent months and has been closed since Sunday when, following two accidents in one day, inspectors deemed the surface unsafe.

Planned resurfacing works have been brought forward and contractors have begun working on the road tonight. It is estimated that the works could take up to 4 days.

Residents attended a meeting yesterday with Councillor Reg Corns and PCSO Wayne Lawrence.

Julie Hancock, who lives alongside the accident black spot, attended the meeting. She told us that Cllr Corns said that contractors will be installing an anti-skid surface. Cllr Corns expressed his support for residents and said that he had previously proposed a new road to ease traffic on Longbridge Lane but the proposal was turned down. He has recently resubmitted his proposals to Birmingham City Council and has asked local residents to support him, especially as traffic on the road is likely to increase once the Longbridge development is completed.

Julie told us that residents have already collected a petition of around a hundred signatures, with supporting letters from residents who live along the road.

Julie speaks of the stress that residents face with so many accidents happening on their doorsteps. She said: “We have to ring emergency services and then we have to go through the trauma of finding out what their injuries are so we can tell 999. We go out and sit with these people whilst we await the relevant services […] it is very stressful when the road’s open as we are just waiting to hear the dreaded screech and bangs that we have come to dread.

“We feel so sorry for the people who get hurt but we also feel sorry for ourselves as its just so stressful” she added.

Julie said that the fire service have been in contact with the council telling them that something needs to be done. Cllr Corns told the meeting that the council had only been informed of 7 accidents this year on Longbridge Lane but residents report more minor ones.

Julie expressed how relieved she is that the resurfacing work is now underway. “It’s time to start the work which I’m so excited about – it’s been a long time. I just dread when its open again.”

Residents also highlighted that some drivers are moving the barriers and using the road anyway, even though it has been deemed unsafe. It was pointed out that if cars go on the road when it is officially closed then their insurance would be void, so if they were to have an accident they would not be covered.

We will keep you up to date on progress.

Many thanks to Julie Hancock and Longbridge Lane residents for information 

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