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Camera enforcement to begin on bus-only route

Published on Friday, June 16, 2017

Camera enforcement is due to begin on a bus-only road in the north of Leicester.

The historic Thurcaston Road Bridge, which provides a route between Abbey Lane and Loughborough Road, has been restricted to buses only since 2000, but is regularly used as a shortcut by other traffic.

Safety concerns were raised by local councillors, residents, and members of parliament over the amount of unauthorised traffic on the road, which is a key route used by pupils at Belgrave St Peter’s Church of England School.

A traffic count carried out at peak times over four days showed almost 560 unauthorised vehicles used the route – or one every 90 seconds.

The Thurcaston Road Bridge is believed to date from the 15th century, and is a Grade III listed site.

Thurcaston Road itself is normally a quiet route through Belgrave, used to access Belgrave Hall, Belgrave Meadows and the waterfront area. Three bus services use the bridge – the service 25, 26 and 40.

Leicester City Council has now given approval to begin enforcing the bus-only restrictions with cameras. 

Cameras and markings are being put in place this week, with enforcement due to begin in July, following a two-week warning period to motorists.

The cameras will operate 24-hours a day, seven days a week. The scheme will cost about £35,000, including all set-up, installation and maintenance costs, after which the costs of the scheme will be funded by income from the cameras.

Drivers caught using the bus-only route will be fined £60, reduced to £30 if paid within 14 days. 

Similar bus gate camera enforcement is already in use elsewhere in Leicester city centre, including sites at Charles Street, Horsefair Street, Rutland Street, Causeway Lane and the A426 Lutterworth Road. 

Leicester assistant city mayor for energy and sustainability, Cllr Adam Clarke, said: “Thurcaston Road Bridge is normally a quiet route linking the historic Belgrave village to Abbey Lane, but recent traffic surveys have shown a substantial number of unauthorised vehicles continue to use it.

“The volume of extra traffic using the bridge has caused concerns about the safety of pedestrians and other people using the route, including pupils from the nearby Belgrave St Peter’s Church of England School.

“We’ve seen elsewhere in the city that camera enforcement of bus lanes and bus gates is very effective at reducing the number of unauthorised vehicles, and in turn improves the reliability of bus services and the safety for all road users.”