Road worker told school girl to go home

Reporter:

Lucy Wain

An Oswestry mother has called into question the actions of a road worker who told a teenager to ‘go home’ rather than go to school.

The alleged incident took place after overnight roadworks overran on the A483 through Llanymynech.

Traffic built up and brought chaos to the area when workers carried on for more than two hours after their 6am deadline to pack up.

Joanne Hayward’s 13-yearold daughter was waiting to get the bus to school from Pant at 8.05am last Thursday.

She was told by a Highways England worker that no buses would be running through that morning – and to ‘go home’.

Mrs Hayward was angry why the worker spoke to her daughter in that manner.

“My daughter came back and told me I’d have to take her to school because a workman told her the buses weren’t running,” said Mrs Hayward.

“I told her not to listen to men like that.

“My worry was you don’t know who people like that really are. He could just have a Highways England vest on and might not even be a workman, and he could have followed her back to an empty house.

“And the bus was running – because of their work over-running, it was just late.

“But I don’t want workmen there telling schoolchildren what to do.”

Mrs Hayward’s daughter attends The Marches School in Oswestry.

Chairman of Pant and Llanymynech Parish Council, Dilys Gaskill, said: “The road was absolutely heaving on Thursday morning. It’s an especially dangerous time as that’s when all the children are making their way to schools.

“The roadwork has caused a lot of disruption and that will continue for three months.

“My question is what is the cost of these roadworks – surely it would make more sense to put this money towards a bypass?”

The overnight road closures began on July 10 and are scheduled to take place until September, and should close the road between 8pm and 6am. However, on Thursday delays to the roadworks meant the road was still closed at 8am.

A Highways England spokesperson did not wish to discuss Mrs Hayward’s concerns and said only: “We apologise for any inconvenience caused. We would like to thank road users and residents for their patience during this work.”

Shropshire Council’s portfolio holder for transport, Cllr Steve Davenport, wants Highways England to consider the implications for the community when work over-runs.

Last month he told members of St Martins Parish Council that work at Gledrid roundabout would finish ‘for certain’ on June 30. Almost two weeks later, the road into St Martins was still being closed overnight for work to take place at the roundabout.

“I just want Highways England to be up front and to tell us what is going on. If work is to overrun, I want to know so I can let residents know.

“The work at Gledrid and the A483 is carried out by Highways England and is nothing to do with Shropshire Council. But I’d like to be kept informed.

“The council has just completed a project in the county with Network Rail and Highways England and everything went very smoothly. I would like that to continue and hope to meet Highways England soon to build bridges with them, so we can work together much more closely in future.”

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