A PETITION has been launched calling for action over a “dangerous and fast” crossing in Verwood.

The online petition, which is being spearheaded by Lisa Lewis, has already gathered more than 530 signatures in support of a safer crossing. It describes the crossing on Manor Road near the Scout Hut as “dangerous and fast” with cars travelling at “high speeds” down the road.

Lisa said: “The safety of that road is dangerously worrying, people have to rush to cross over, often taking risks in small gaps as there isn’t often safe times to cross in rush hour.

“They also have to take it in turns if there is a few families waiting to cross, as there isn’t room to cross many at a time.”

She hopes to get 1,000 signatures before sending it to Dorset Council.

She said: “I decided to launch the petition because I have walked that way to school since I was five-years-old and I now walk my own children to school that way. Over the last 30 years there has been almost no improvement to the crossing there and as Verwood has expanded the traffic has increased dramatically.”

She says the area to cross is a “speeding area” and has “poor visibility” for people wanting to cross from the Scout Hut side, as the hedges are “further out than the pavement meaning cars cannot see pedestrians very well” and “pedestrians have to lean out to see how many cars are coming down”. Lisa says that she, and many others, often take a longer route to avoid it.

The petition will be sent to Dorset Council.

Lisa hopes it will also give Verwood Town Council the “proof it needs for the demand for a safer crossing area so that Dorset Council will fund and build one”.

She added: “Please sign the petition, if we don’t make it happen, who will? This change needs to happen. Verwood needs to raise its safety levels here and at other crossing areas in Verwood, for us now and for future generations of children and families crossing here.”

A spokesperson for Verwood Town Council said: “The town council has asked Dorset Council to investigate this site again to see if it meets the requirements for a crossing. It has been reviewed previously by Dorset Council and on the previous occasion it failed to meet the minimum requirements laid out by Dorset Council after traffic and pedestrian assessments.

“As a town council we constantly review pedestrian needs for the town based on resident’s feedback and send requests through to Dorset Council for assessments and action where appropriate.”

Dorset Councillor Simon Gibson, speaking on behalf of himself and his fellow Verwood councillors Toni Coombs and Spencer Flower, said: “We’re really pleased with everything that is going on. Lisa has done a great job in raising the issue with the wider public. It is clear from the petition there is lots of interest in this as an issue. It is not a niche issue, 500 plus signatures demonstrates that there is a concern about it.”

Cllr Gibson added it is an issue that has been “on the radar for a little while but there is no substitute for having such a strong public show of support for it”.

“We are really pleased to try and take that on and get it fixed,” said Cllr Gibson, who will be meeting with Dorset Council’s portfolio holder for roads at the site next week.

To sign the petition click here. A Verwood Safer Road Crossings Facebook page has also been set up.