FAMILIES are celebrating victory this week after a 14-year long campaign for road safety measures outside a Leek school.
Highway officials from Staffordshire County Council have given £100,000 to a project to improve road safety and traffic congestion near to All Saint's School in Cheddleton Road, Leek, after a tireless campaign by residents, staff and families.
The package of improvements includes pedestrian controlled crossings on each of the three legs of a junction on the A520 and street light improvements to aid visibility in the dark.
The battle for road safety improvements has been raging for many years with many meetings and a petition being launched in June, 2006.
All Saints First school headteacher Isobel Smith, who is due to retire at Christmas, has been campaigning for around 11 years. Councillor Neal Podmore has also been pushing for the improvements.
County council senior project engineer Michael Smith made the announcement at a Leek Town Council meeting. He told Your Leek Paper: "We have created a design that facilitates safer crossing for school children and the public. The pedestrian controlled crossings will hopefully help control the traffic onto the A520 from Junction Road, and also ease congestion and road rage."
Asked why the project has taken so long to complete, he said: "It is all down to justification and resources. There isn't enough money for all the schemes in the area to be funded, they are individually justified on their merits.
Along with the petition, letters have been written by the schoolchildren expressing their concerns about safety when walking to school.
Mr Smith said: "In today's culture we look to improve safety for vulnerable people and children fall into that category."
The project wa still in planning stages with officials currently performing a consultation for the public, he said.
"These things do take time. When the consultation is complete we hope the public will support our plans.
"We believe our scheme will satisfy any objectors and make life better for the residents and the school. If there are no major objections we hope to start the work in September."
The £100,000 package has been sourced from the Local Transport Plan in the Transportation Section at Staffordshire County Council.