RESIDENTS will have to wait even longer to get rid of a controversial pinch point – months after council chiefs agreed to remove it.
Arguments between the district and county councils, plus the winter storms, have been blamed for the delay in removing the pinch point near the Haddon House Hotel in West Bay.
The road design narrows West Bay Road to prevent two-way traffic, forcing vehicles leaving the harbour to give way to motorists on their way in.
Members of the West Bay Community Forum branded the system – implemented as part of the £1.25million West Bay enhancement scheme – ‘an accident waiting to happen’.
Speaking at the forum’s AGM on Thursday, Dorset County Councillor Ros Kayes said delays were due to wrangling between West Dorset District and the county councils.
She said: “The district council showed a design to the county council, but they decided there was something wrong with it.
“The director of environment at the county council has agreed to a meeting to talk about it and get it exactly right.”
She added: “Given the extreme weather conditions and £12million repairs that are needed on roads across Dorset, I do not think we would have got it done by now anyway, even if the district council had been more efficient. But we have had confirmation that it will be done.”
A spokeswoman for West Dorset District Council was unable to confirm when the work will be carried out. She added: “There is no time scale on this.”
The county council carried out the work on behalf of the district council, and this arrangement will continue for the removal of the pinch point.
Along with other alterations to the traffic system – which was constructed in March last year – the residents immediately raised concerns that because the pinch point is located just yards from a mini-roundabout, drivers are forced to give way at two points.
A petition signed by 1,500 people was put before West Dorset District Councillors at a full council meeting in January.
Councillors agreed to commission design work from the county council to widen the pinch point as well as request the resurfacing of the area between St John’s Church and the shops to make it more obvious that pedestrians have priority.
They also agreed to ask the county council to return priority to the right hand turn at the junction of West Bay Road and Station Road.