Controversial road ‘must stay open’

Gathered at the bottom of Falcon Road are Amanda O'Connelley, front right, with fellow campaigners Kim Watson, Paula Bradley, Donna Grant, Ann Walker, Joanne Stephenson.
Gathered at the bottom of Falcon Road are Amanda O'Connelley, front right, with fellow campaigners Kim Watson, Paula Bradley, Donna Grant, Ann Walker, Joanne Stephenson.
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RESIDENTS on a busy housing estate say a controversial road must stay open.

The future of Falcon Road, off Throston Grange Lane, in Hartlepool, is up for consultation over the coming weeks.

Residents on the road say it should be closed so it cannot be used as a short-cut through the Bishop Cuthbert Estate. But other homeowners on the estate say the road is vital for access and it would be “irresponsible” to close it.

Hartlepool Borough Council hand-delivered letters to thousands of residents on the estate last week outlining five possible outcomes for the road, one of which is to close it, while another involves other road closures.

But Amanda O’Connelley, 43, a freelance hairstylist and resident, of nearby Goshawk Road, said Falcon Road is not a shortcut and is vital for access.

The mum of Emily, 11, and Isobelle, eight, who is married to Martin, 43, a commercial director, said: “I think someone should have been brave enough to say the road is staying open.

“It is vital for access. If you close Falcon Road you are forcing people down Hart Lane which is increasing traffic on an already busy road and passing a number of accident black-spots.

“It would also mean access is decreased to a busy estate. What about emergency vehicles?”

Falcon Road residents last week told the Mail that it is only a matter of time before there is a serious accident due to the amount of traffic using the road.

But Mrs O’Connelley says despite the argument rumbling on for years, there has never been an accident in the past.

She added: “The road is not ideal, but to limit a huge estate like Bishop Cuthbert to one access road would be irresponsible.

“I believe the road provides community access to community facilities such as libraries and community centres.

“We don’t have these facilities in Bishop Cuthbert, our community is Throston.”

Kay Copeman, 40, a mum-of-two and a resident in nearby Moorhen Road, added: “The road should be left as it is.

“To close it would cause so much trouble, it is going to force all of the traffic from the estate on to one road.”

A Hartlepool Borough Council spokesman last week told the Mail: “The consultation process is currently on-going and residents can be assured that all responses will be fully considered before a final decision is taken.”