‘Impossible to cross the road’

Residents around Blandford Avenue are angry at plans to close the tram track crossing

Residents around Blandford Avenue are angry at plans to close the tram track crossing

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RESIDENTS have launched a legal battle in a bid to force a tram crossing to be re-opened.

Papers have been lodged at the High Court in Manchester, and also served to Blackpool Council, seeking a Judicial Review on actions leading up to the closure of the crossing to vehicles at Lauderdale Avenue in Anchorsholme.

Town hall chiefs ruled the junction had to close to enable the new £100m tramway to operate safely.

A pedestrian crossing has been maintained but residents must travel further to reach the other side of the tracks by car.

Anchorsholme ward councillor Tony Williams said: “The action has been instigated by a local resident who wishes at this point to remain anonymous and we believe there is strong evidence to support a Judicial Review and hopefully the courts will agree to a full hearing. Both my fellow ward councillor Paul Galley and I have assisted with the action and have been amazed at the support of all the community.

“We promised to continue the fight to have this crossing re-instated.”

Coun Galley added: “Although a pedestrian crossing has been left open this is unsignalled and we believe a real danger. Traffic now moves more quickly past this closed junction and trying to cross the road is almost impossible.

“The council wasted almost £12,000 opening and then closing this crossing it’s a complete mess.”

The legal documents submitted to the High Court claim the community’s best interests have not been taken into account. The issue went before the council’s executive five times before a final decision was made in February this year.

A 3,000-signature petition opposing the closure was submitted along with emergency services’ concerns.

However, the council said the crossing needed to be closed to allow the Bombardier trams to run safely.

The council today confirmed it was aware of the action and said it believed the decision-making process had been correct.