Businesses speak of concerns after man injured in collision

The road in a Lincolnshire town where a man was recently hit by a vehicle can be ‘dangerous,’ but the incident was a ‘one-off,’ nearby business owners have said. Lincolnshire Police received reports at 3.11pm on Wednesday, June 8 that a male pedestrian had been injured following a collision with a ‘truck’ in Sleaford. The incident is understood to have occurred by Barclays Bank on East Gate, where works appeared to be being carried out.

Roads in the centre of the town were closed until around 5pm, when the force posted an update on Twitter to say they had reopened fully. An air ambulance was in attendance and was heard hovering overhead before reportedly landing on the playing fields of Kesteven and Sleaford High School on Jermyn Street. The man, confirmed to be in his 50s, is believed to have suffered injuries that are not life-threatening nor life-alternating, according to a spokesperson for Lincolnshire Police.

Read more: Plans for 57 new Lincolnshire homes due to be refused Business owners nearby have said the surrounding roads can get quite badly congested from 3pm onwards when schoolchildren need picking up. They added they felt the incident acts an example of a bigger problem in the area.

Wendy Hanslip, the owner of Bellissimo Boutique on the market square, said the turning from South Gate onto East Gate was a “blind spot” for both pedestrians and drivers. “Coming around from the high street past Barclays can be a bit tricky,” she told Lincolnshire Live. “If somebody comes around and the lights are green, they’ll speed up a bit because they don’t want to miss them, so you’re stood wondering if it’s safe to go or not. It can be dangerous – especially for the kids and older people.

She added that even though there was a pedestrian crossing further up the road, a lot of people cross opposite Bristol Arcade because it’s ‘quicker’. “It’s laziness and we’re all guilty of it,” Mrs Hanslip said.

This would be the second crossing pedestrians could use on East Gate.This would be the second crossing pedestrians could use on East Gate.

Currently, the only set of traffic lights on East Gate is at the end of the road by Carre Street. A refurbished crossing appears to be in the process of being installed at that point on East Gate, though temporary barriers remain in place. Slabs of tactile paving have been laid on the south side of the road, which help indicate to blind people that they have reached a crossing.

Mrs Hanslip said the “sooner it gets put in, the better,” and WiseGuys clothing shop manager, Zoeb Hassanali, said it was good to see something being installed that could people cross the road more safely. “There are these high kerbs, but if you’re elderly or semi-disabled you need something at your level,” Mr Hassanali said. “I’ve had to stop the traffic before to help elderly ladies get across the road. “It’s good that they’re doing something about it.

Schoolchildren will run across the road to get across, which can be quite hair-raising and especially so as a father, so hopefully this new crossing can resolve some of those issues.” Lorraine Buckley runs the neighbouring party supply shop, Lorraine’s. “Not only have you got the buses picking children up but parents will swing into the marketplace to pick them up,” she said. “That’s fine of course, but it means that there are a lot of people in the marketplace around 3pm and 3.30pm and it was maybe an accident waiting to happen.

The buses all park in the little layby at the marketplace and then you get a lot of people stepping out from in between buses trying to get across. However, although crossing the road could be dangerous, she didn’t feel that Sleaford was a bad town for traffic and described the incident as ‘rare’. “We get traffic backed up but I don’t think it’s a bad town at all,” she said. “The incident that happened isn’t something that happens often, and I think the reaction there’s been to it is because of that.

There’s been a lot of concern from people on social media and people have been hoping that the person was okay. “In some towns, you always seem to hear about people getting hit but here it is very, very rare. I don’t think you can blame the drivers, the schoolchildren or the pedestrians – it was just an accident.”

Simon Biggin, the owner of SJB Uniforms and Workwear on Market Street, said he felt a similar way and that the incident wasn’t a ’cause for concern’. “I don’t think it’s any worse here than anywhere else in the country,” Mr Biggin said. “We’ve got bad drivers in Sleaford but there’ll be bad drivers elsewhere. We have great drivers, too, and there’ll be great drivers in other places.

“I can’t read into it any more than that over just the one incident.

You don’t hear of spates of these things happening every week.

“We are a small town and three big secondary schools all kick out at the same time, but I wouldn’t say it’s more dangerous than anywhere else.”

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