Councillors demand speed cameras on busy Southend Road

Exasperated councillors are demanding speed cameras are added to a busy Southend dual carriageway immediately – fearing more homes will increase problems with speeding cars plaguing the road.

Following a series of petitions from residents, ward councillors have now launched a campaign calling for average speed cameras to be added to Eastern Avenue.

The road has seen a string of accidents over recent years and 1,400 homes are set to be built at Fossetts Farm – including 500 planned at Roots Hall before a deal was agreed for Southend United to be sold.

Brian Beggs, Conservative councillor for St Luke’s ward, said: “I don’t really understand why it’s not been followed up with the amount of safety issues along that whole stretch.

“The amount of reports along that stretch right the way down to Cuckoo Corner, of cars ending up crashing and barriers damaged.

“Surely it would be better to slow down the traffic. I will never understand why it hasn’t been implemented so far.”

The issue will be debated by Southend Council at a cabinet meeting next Thursday.

Cllr Beggs added: “I’ve been pushing this for about two years now so I’m hoping this time it is going to be followed and it is going to be supported. Hopefully it will make the road safer.

“The amount of elderly residents and people on electric bikes who are on the pavement because they are too worried about being hit on the road.

“There was funding a couple of years ago but it was transferred to another ward so I’m hoping that money can be clawed back if they are not going ahead elsewhere.”

Labour’s Martin Berry, a fellow St Luke’s Ward councillor, added: “It’s been going on for ages. We’ve tried all sorts of things to persuade the powers that be to get cameras put in there. There is no alternative that I can see. People barrel down there and there have been accidents.

“At one police meeting they said there isn’t the data to back up the necessity for these. I said well if they could give me a figure of how many people have to be killed or injured I’ll shut up.

“The petition is unfortunately necessary. It shouldn’t be necessary. With Southend United seemingly staying at Roots Hall there could be more houses going along there than there would have been but the infrastructure needs to be there. We can’t keep putting more and more traffic there.”


Christine Sexton

Local Democracy Reporter