Horse’s death prompts new crossing to improve road safety

  • A safer crossing for horses is to be built on a lane in Surrey after a horse was killed in June.

    Claygate councillor Mary Marshall has raised £2,600 to cover the cost of the crossing for Woodstock Lane South.

    Cllr Marshall was returning home from work in June when the accident happened.

    “Somebody had flytipped a double bed on the path which runs alongside Woodside Lane (pictured on another occasion) South and the lady dismounted to lead the horse past. The horse slipped in a ditch and spooked again. It then bolted into an oncoming car,” she told H&H.

    Chessington Equestrian Centre donated £500 and other local livery yards, whose riders need to cross the road to reach the best hacking, have helped with fundraising.

    “The road is very dangerous with cars travelling at speed so we really need a better crossing. Anything to make it safer for riding will be fantastic. We are very grateful to Mary for instigating this,” said local rider Sara Thain.

    Claygate Parish Council donated £500 and Ms Marshall was given a £1,000 grant from Cllr Mike Bennison.

    Work is expected to begin on the new crossing this month and will take a week to complete.

    At the end of the bridlepath there will now be a corralled area where horses will have to turn back through split rails to get out.

    On the other side of the crossing a path will be cleared to enable horses to go up the verge beside the road.

    Surrey County Council has agreed to put up horse and rider signs, paint “slow” on the road and cut roadside verges to improve visibility. The project is supported by three other councils: Elmbridge Borough Council — which has put up a no fly tipping sign— Claygate Parish Council and the Royal Borough of Kingston.

    “Hopefully it will improve the safety of horses and riders in our area,” said Cllr Marshall. “I’d also like to clear the ditches running alongside the bridlepath as it on clay and becomes very muddy in winter. There’s more to be done.”

    The crossing will be used by at least 200 horses, all kept at the six livery yards in the area.

    “We are doing our best to improve safety but riders need to wear high vis clothing especially on country lanes,” urged Cllr Marshall.

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