Support needed for Belmont Brae proposal

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A STONEHAVEN resident has made a renewed call for the town’s Belmont Brae to be pedestrianised.

Jim McMillan, OBE, who lives on Belmont Brae, contacted Aberdeenshire Council after a lorry became stuck on the corner of the hill last month, despite signs warning of weight restrictions.

Mr McMillan said that something should be done to make the area pedestrianised, or at least only open to one way traffic, before a serious accident occurs. He expressed concerns for pedestrians who were currently forced to cross at a blind corner or walk on the road, and said that it was an accident waiting to happen.

Mr McMillan is now hoping to get some public support for his appeal, after the local authority told him that there has been “no real consensus” with regards to improving the situation on the Brae.

A letter from Roads Manager Stuart McFarlane said: “In order to assess the opinion of the wider community groups I will consult with the local councillors who can help gauge the reaction to proposals from local ones and those who have an interest.

“If a preferred option emerges, and there is a general appetite for change, it would be something we could consider in future traffic reviews of the area.

The letter states that if the issue was to progress to a traffic review, it would be widely consulted upon and be considered by the Kincardine and Mearns Area Committee. However, Mr McFarlane goes on to say: “evidence available...in the form of accident statistics and lodged complaints, does not lead them to believe that significant issues exist.”

Mr McMillan has urged anyone who agrees with him to contact the council with their views.

He said: “It concerns me that we should even consider waiting until even one ‘accident statistic’ is available before we do something.

‘‘Surely in this age of Health and Safety awareness, someone should be carrying out a risk assessment and taking preventative action before an accident occurs?’’