Residents have slammed a local “rat run” road which has been the site of multiple dangerous collisions – but they say nothing is being done about it as it crosses over the boundaries of different London boroughs.
66-year-old Susan Thomas’ son said his car burst into flames after being hit in Winn Road, on the border of Greenwich and Lewisham Boroughs. She says her family has had numerous cars written off because of the dangerous driving on the road.
Having submitted petitions and been to meetings, Susan has been left frustrated, saying: “We’ve done everything and they don’t want to know because one side is Greenwich and the other is Lewisham.”
Another, 76-year-old Mike Pudelek, called it “an accidental issue of history”, explaining: “We pay our council tax to Greenwich and they do nothing because they say [the road] belongs to Lewisham. And Lewisham say, ‘Well, you pay your taxes to Greenwich, there’s nothing in it for us’.”
The street has gained a reputation for its “atrocious” driving, reports MyLondon, with the death of an 18-year-old in 2007 among its terrible incidents.
Ms Thomas described how one car had crashed into a wall, as well as how she was “scared” of crossing the road when walking with her grandchildren. She also claims a man next door avoids going out to get his daily newspaper, once a common activity of his.
Meanwhile, she says the neighbours have collectively forked out about £2,500 on vehicle repairs so far.
A petition was sent to Greenwich Council in 2019 for traffic calming measures, and the Council admitted in documents the 20mph restriction was often not respected because of the sharp incline on the road.
76-year-old Mr Pudelek said he felt “very very let down” by both Lewisham and Greenwich Councils after little change had been introduced.
He described how Winn Road was effectively a relief road for the A2 and A20, adding: “commercial vehicles will overtake you on the wrong side of the road going down the hill because they want to get home and this is their new rat run”.
Greenwich Councillor Averil Lekau said the council was using data to determine areas in the borough for future traffic management schemes – but said potential locations could not be revealed until early 2024.
Greenwich documents suggest Winn Road is largely maintained by Lewisham Council.
A Greenwich Council spokesperson said: “Winn Road is a boundary road split in the middle between the Royal Borough of Greenwich and the London Borough of Lewisham, however the road is maintained and primarily the responsibility of the London Borough of Lewisham.
“Boundary road maintenance agreements are historic, and council tax liability does not necessarily reflect who maintains a road.”
They added: “We are not aware of any proposals from the London Borough of Lewisham related to this issue, but we are always happy to engage with them on any proposals they may have.”
A Lewisham Council spokesperson said: “We have been actively engaging with residents on Winn Road to address their concerns around road safety in the area. Following a meeting with residents this summer, a number of road safety improvements have been made in the wider area, including a new bollard to prevent vehicles cutting corners, the repair and relocation of a traffic island and the repainting of road markings.”
They added: “We are currently in the process of developing a borough-wide programme of new road safety and traffic calming measures and the concerns raised by residents on Winn Road and surrounding roads will be fed into this process.”