Care home residents’ plea for Musbury road crossing

Barley Close residents say being ‘trapped’ on the wrong side of the busy highway stops them joining the community

Disabled residents at a Musbury care home have launched a petition for a road crossing so they can take part in community life.

Currently occupants at the village’s Barley Close centre, who have learning and physical disabilities, are effectively trapped on the wrong side of the busy A358.

They have to rely on transport to take them just the few hundred yards to shops, the church and other local services because of the risk from speeding traffic.

Now The Devon Learning Disability Parliament has teamed up with home operators Voyage Care to campaign for a zebra crossing or footpath.

Emma Bishop, Learning Disability Parliament MP for complex needs said she hoped everyone would support their petition.

She told The Herald: “We would very much like to see a safe road crossing so residents can go across to the village and Musbury residents can cross for their own needs.

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“The residents at Barley Close want to become more involved in village life - to use the pub, shop and church on a regular basis. At the moment they can only leave their house in a car, which clearly limits their ability to ‘pop to the shop’.1

“Barley Close is having a coffee morning on 28th June 2012, to welcome the village into their home so people can see first hand the difficulties the residents have in taking part in village life.”

Rob Robinson, service manager at Barely Close, said despite the 40mph limit along the main road many drivers went much faster, making it too dangerous for residents to cross.

He said: “We at Barley Close ensure people are at the heart of everything we do and nothing is more important than providing high quality, professional care for the individuals we support.

“As part of our commitment to helping those we support them leading happy, healthy and fulfilling lives.

“Road safety improvements such as the introduction of a zebra crossing, pavements and/or a 30 mile an hour speed limit on the road outside Barley Close would enable staff and service users to walk into the nearby village, rather than always having to take a car. This would enhance the range of activities we can offer and strengthen our existing links with the community.

“We are working closely with Devon Link Up, an organisation which gives people with learning disabilities more choices so they can enjoy life in their community and they are fully supportive of our campaign to improve road safety and pedestrian access to our local village.”

Amongst those who went along to see the traffic problems facing Barley Close residents this week was the village’s county councillor and Mayor of Axminster Andrew moulding.

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